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Gundani sees Billiat, Musona and Mukamba leading Warriors revival

Now playing for Belgian top-flight outfit KV Oostende ... Knowledge Musona

11/04/2015 00:00:00
by Gaol.com
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PAUL Gundani has commended the resurgence of stars Knowledge Musona, Khama Billiat and Denvar Mukamba as the country looks to emerge from international football wilderness

Musona is living his dream of playing in Europe to good effect, and recently scored his fourth goal in five matches for Belgian top-flight outfit KV Oostende.

Billiat has overcome his own injury woes to emerge as a key performer in Mamelodi Sundowns’ customary late-season title charge.

Zimbabwe’s 2012 player of the year Mukamba meanwhile, is beginning to show flashes of his old brilliance, complete with the sort of audacity that saw him score directly from the corner flag for University of Pretoria on Sunday.

Inevitably, Warriors legend Gundani is impressed: “Those young players have been doing very well. I follow them a lot and I must say they have been doing us proud."

“It is good to see them prove their quality and showing they are ready to take their careers to the next level. It is good for the national team to have such young players doing so well,” Gundani told Goal last week.

How things have changed. Only a year ago, the future looked anything but exciting for all three. Musona and Billiat were incapacitated by injuries, while Mukamba was barely recognisable as he endured a miserable spell at Bidvest Wits.

Today, all are fit and looking well-placed to spearhead Zimbabwe’s revival on the international stage.

Zimbabwe can rebuild around Musona, Billiat and Mukamba ... Paul Gundani

Gundani however, warned that the good work from these players, and several others, would come to nought without the organisation to bring them together more regularly to forge an understanding in national colours.

Organisational chaos

“In a way I feel sorry for these players because they have not been able to come together and play for their country in a very long time. We had an international break recently, for example, and yet Zimbabwe were inactive.

“That is a major weakness on our part because international football can also help our players to develop. It boosts their confidence and gives them the exposure they need at this stage of their development.


“People still talk about the Dream Team for instance but many forget that we managed to make such an impression because we had been together for seven years,” Gundani said.

As things stand, the Warriors are currently stranded in no man’s land with confusion reigning following their purported dissolution by the Zifa board last year.

Carrying Zim hopes for decent Afcon and World Cup campaign ... Denvar Mukamba

Zifa president Cuthbert Dube, back then, said his association would be focusing on junior national teams, with the under-23s fulfilling senior national team engagements.

With the 2017 Afcon qualifiers just a couple of months away however, the picture remains hazy with no credible preparations taking place.

Gundani warned against throwing under-23 players into the deep end all on their own.

“It would be a terrible mistake if Zifa goes ahead with the plan to use a team exclusively made up of under-23s for the Afcon qualifiers. The young players need some experienced hands to guide them.

“During our time, we had talented young players coming in, the likes of the late Benjamin Konjera, Vitalis Takawira and Norman Mapeza, but they were blooded in gradually without upsetting the balance of the team,” he said.

Zimbabwe have not qualified for the Afcon finals since 2006.

This article was originally published by Goal.com

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