Zimbabwe National Football Team
The Warriors in the National Colours
|Full name||The Zimbabwe National Soccer Team|
|League||National Soccer Team|
Also known as The Warriors, the Zimbabwe National Football Team represents Zimbabwe in international football. It is made up of Zimbabwean professional footballers drawn from the local Zimbabwe Premier Soccer League clubs, lower division clubs as well as foreign clubs. The team is controlled and administered by the national soccer governing body, the Zimbabwe Football Association (ZIFA).
It is coached by a national team coach who is usually contracted by ZIFA. The coach is assisted by a technical team and the team manager. The players are led by a captain who is appointed on the basis of both expertise and behavior in the game. Zimbabwe contests in international competitions such as the COSAFA Cup, the CAF Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) and the FIFA World Cup. Zimbabwe has qualified for AFCON on three occasions 2004, 2006 and 2017. However, they are yet to qualify for the FIFA World Cup.
The current kit manufacturer for the Warriors is Mafro Sports
History of Team
The team that is now called the Warriors evolved from a team dominated by white players during the colonial period in the then Rhodesia. The team was initially dominated by players from urban clubs such as Darryn T, Salisbury Callies, Salisbury City, Salisbury United and Acadia United. The Rhodesian national soccer team had not done much in terms of racial integration save for the occasional inclusion of a token black player such as George Shaya. The growth of Highlanders Football Club which was formed in 1926 and the formation of Dynamos Football Club in 1963 resulted in more black Zimbabweans beginning to make an impact in local football. The team was eventually renamed to Zimbabwe National Soccer Team in 1980 after the country had attained its independence. In the post independence era, the team was once known as the The Dream Team under the guidance of the now late German coach Reinhard Fabisch. The team comprised legends of Zimbabwe's football history such Peter Ndlovu, Rahman Gumbo, Henry McKop, Bruce Grobbelaar, Adam Ndlovu, Benjamin Nkonjera, Agent Sawu, Vitalis Takawira, Norman Mapeza, Francis Shonhai just to mention a few. The Dream Team was ranked number 40 in the FIFA World Rankings, the highest the national team has achieved to date.
- Norman Mapeza (Interim)
- 2013-2014: Ian Gorowa
- 2012- 2013: Klaus Deiter Pagels
- 2011-2012: Rahman Gumbo
- January 2008-Novemeber 2008: Jose Valinhos
- 2007-2007: Charles Mhlauri
- 2003-2007: Sunday Chidzambwa
- 2001 : Wieslaw Grabowski
- 1998-2000:Clemens Westerhof
- 1997: Ian Potterfield
- 1995: Gibson Homela
- 1992-1995: Reinhard Fabisch
- 1988 -1992 Ben Kouffie
This is Zimbabwe's current Warriors squad:
- Costa Nhamoinesu (Sparta Praha)
- Bruce Kangwa (Azam FC)
- Elisha Muroiwa (Dynamos)
- Hardlife Zvirekwi (Caps United)
- Oscar Machapa (AS Vita Club)
- Onismor Bhasera (Supersport United)
- Lawrence Mhlanga (Chicken Inn)
- Teenage Hadebe (Chicken Inn)
- Danny Phiri (Golden Arrows)
- Willard Katsande (Kaizer Chiefs)
- Khama Billiat (Mamelodi Sundowns)
- Kudakwashe Mahachi (Golden Arrows)
- Marvelous Nakamba (Vitesse Arnhem)
- Tinitenda Philana Kadewere (Djuargardens)
- Cuthbert Malajila (Bidvest Wits)
- Evans Rusike (Maritzburg United)
- Knowledge Musona (KV Oostende)
- Mathew Rusike (Helsingborgs IF)
- Tendai Ndoro (Orlando Pirates)
- Nyasha Mushekwi (Dalian Yifang)
- COSAFA Cup :
- 4-time champions (2000, 2003, 2005, 2009)
- 3-time runners-up
- CECAFA Cup :
- 1-time champion (1985)
- 2-time runners-up (1983, 1987)
Being an independent state in 1980 Zimbabwe beat Mozambique 6-0 in its first game. Its biggest win was in 1990 when it thumbed Botswana 7-0. Among achievements of a Zimbabwe football club is the CAF Champions League, where the team played in the finals twice. First was in in 2004 when it qualified under the leadership of Sunday Chidzambwa and seconfly under Charles Mlhauri in 2006. One more success the national team achieved was the title of the Unofficial Football World Champions as a result of friendly games. The team has also won the COSAFA Castle cup for a record four times. It won the cup in 2000, 2003, 2005 and 2009. Zimbabwe is thus one of the countries with the highest number of COSAFA titles and it shares the spot with Zambia which also has four titles to its name. The Zimbabwe Warriors also qualified for the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations in June 2016 after beating Malawi 3-0 at a match played at the National Sports Stadium.
The Southern Rhodesia national football team made its debut in 1950 when they were defeated by Australia 0-5. Zimbabwe has never made it possible to qualify for the World Cup finals and twice it failed to progress beyond the first round of their two participations in the African Cup of Nations in 2004 and 2006. In 2015, the Zimbabwe national team was expelled from the 2018 world cup qualifier matches after it was reported to FIFA for failing to pay its previous coach Georgini his USD$60 000 allowance.
Some Outstanding Players
The Warriors produced some players who made an impact on the international football arena. These include Peter Ndlovu who played for Sheffield United in the English Premier League, Benjani Mwaruwari who played for Manchester City and Portsmouth, Khama Billiat who won the South African 2016 Soccer Star of the Year Award, Knowledge Musona, Esrom Nyandoro, Moses Chunga, Bruce Grobbelaar, Lloyd Mutasa, George Shaya, Rahman Gumbo among others.
- , HISTORY AND ACHIEVEMENTS,Football Top, retrieved:14 Apr 2015"
- Warriors squad to face Tanzania, Soccer24, Published:8 Nov 2016, Retrieved: 23 Dec 2016
- , Cosafa draw produces tricky ties,SuperSport, published:15 Feb 2015,retrieved:14 Apr 2015"
- , Tawanda Tafirenyika, Warriors thrash Malawi, qualify for Afcon, NewsDay, published: 6 June 206, retrieved: 6 June 2016
- Online Reporter, Breaking News: Zim Expelled from 2018 World Cup,The Herald, published:12 Mar 2015,retrieved:14 Apr 2015:"