|Reasons players fail to make the grade|
|Saturday, 28 July 2012 20:36|
With no Zimbabwean players breaking into European football this July transfer window, local football agents have glaringly come under the spotlight for their failure to export players to competitive leagues.
The South African league was a difficult destination for even the most revered and established stars with Warriors midfielder Denver Mukamba and striker Rodwell Chinyengetere headlining the current crop that is struggling to make the grade down south.
Quite a good number of Castle Lager Premiership luminaries that include Quad Amini, Charles Sibanda and Rodrick Mutuma have since December tried to move across the Limpopo, with no joy.
Although Mukamba’s manager, Gibson Mahachi, remains adamant that “Mundikumbuke”, as the slippery winger is fondly known by his fans, has not failed trials at Bidvest Wits, the fact for now is that no deal has been clinched between the agent and Wits.
European leagues, but other factors had hindered the transfers, chief among them the Asiagate match-fixing scandal.
He added: “I will give you the Knowledge Musona issue as an example. Zifa went to town and rushed to accuse him of fixing national games without making due and necessary checks and the next morning the story was in the news in Germany where he plays and it obviously damages his image, and all other players that we produce as a country.”
Musona is, however, still playing in the German Bundesliga after joining lowly Augusburg on loan from TSG Hoffenheim before the 2012/2013 season.
“It takes a lot for us to convince those guys in Europe because we lack basic things like professional academies besides a few like Aces Youth Academy. If, say, Ajax in Holland have two players on trial, one from the Asec Mimosas academy and the other from Zimbabwe, the odds favour the Ivorian to be signed because the club knows they are getting a player who has come through the correct system,” Mutashu said.
Some of the player managers also shouldered blame, conceding that they are less networked, which made it difficult for them to facilitate moves to Europe.
Zimbabwe boasts of 33 licensed agents, which is a very high number compared to such countries as Zambia (1), Sudan (1), Benin (2), Angola (4) and Kenya (6), but it has not helped local players to make the grade overseas.