Hope Chizuzu, Sports Analyst
HARARE – Clueless Warriors coach Zdravko Logarusic who has presided over 14 matches, winning only once has coached his last game after Zifa finally agreed to let the Croat go and hand the button stick to a local coach, The Page can reveal.
Loga, who has survived this long because of the support he got from the de facto Zifa President, Phelimon Machana, the man who drew up his contract in which the Croat pocketed USD7000 (publicly) but Zifa paid out USD12K every month, leaving many to speculate who shared the difference.
But soon after the result from Ethiopia confirmed that Zimbabwe lost 1-0, the Zifa President Felton Kamambo, circulated in their WhatsApp group that Loga should be fired upon arrival tomorrow.
The decision was triggered by a letter written by head of delegation and Zifa executive committee member responsible for competition, Sugar Chagonda.
The Kamambo crew from the Northern Region leaked the letter to The Page to prove that all along the stumbling block has been Machana.
“It has been a battle for the past two and half years with Machana taking advantage of Kamambo ill health to wrestle power and control.
“Most of these problems were are having are created by Machana’s insatiable love for power. He is the one who recruited some of the lap dogs in Zifa like Mpandare.
It is high time the world knows the truth. The Zifa Congress has been accused of being toothless and useless, yet our problem is Machana.
“If Loga is not fired, then, let it be known that it is Machana again and we can not afford to have Kamambo being blamed again yet it is the power hungry Machana,” a source from Northern Region opened to The Page.
The last executive committee agreed to fire Loga but Machana stalled it by asking the technical and development committee to him with some details.
Maybe he wanted Zimbabwe to lose five points first before he can make an easy decision of firing the useless coach. But the emotional letter penned by Chagonda from Bahia Dar, which The Page got is telling a very sad story.
“07 September 2021
Zimbabwe Football Association
53 Livingston Avenue
Attention: Mr F Kamambo
I post my greetings from Ethiopia a country in the horn of Africa. I tried calling you, to no avail and had to deposit a message into your WhatsApp inbox.
President, I couldn’t wait to endure a flight beyond 6 hours to engage you and pour my heart out. I had to burn the mid night candle to pen this missive after a disappointing loss to the host.
Admittedly, President, under your astute leadership, the ZIFA Board has achieved a lot (off the pitch).
I consider myself lucky to have served under your administration because you are an honest man whose love for the game remains undoubtful.
I know how passionate you are about the beautiful game. This is the reason why you prioritised the clearance of ZIFA debt and freed the association from the painful york it had carried for years.
It is for this reason that I feel pained when our Board and your personality is subjected to unfair, unjustified criticism and ridicule from some quarters. To all this your response has remained the same, “let football do the talking’’.
Mr President thank you for appointing me as Head of Zimbabwe Delegation to Ethiopia for the World Cup qualifiers match. It’s an honour sir.
I had an opportunity to interact with all and sundry, administrators, technical team and the players.
Mr President I am sorry to say, but I wish to vehemently pursue and sustain an argument from our recent Board meeting that the Head Coach Zdravco Logarusic is now a liability and an albatross on our neck.
True to your word, football has talked.
Beyond the facts laid before us to the fact that the national team coach lack basic appreciation of the game, he is too temperamental and lacks leadership skills.
The coach does not consult other members of the technical team, that is if he plans his workout because I am reliably informed his training programme does not change (he has one predictable training drill).
As if the above is not enough, In the embarrassing encounter against Ethiopia today, it boggles the mind why he was stuck on the bench when the players were protesting the referee’s decision to award the host a penalty in the 84th minute (94th).
There was no way the man in the centre would have changed his decision. Loga was supposed to tell his boys to allow the penalty to be taken and remain positive.
When we lose, we should do so with dignity. The long and short of it Mr President, my recommendation is to part ways with Mr Logarusic immediately.
Only a stubborn fly can follow the corpse to the grave.
We need to immediately appoint a local coach to take over.
He has been given adequate time to prove his unworthiness and he has done that.
Who needs him now because clearly our football doesn’t need him?
We have just started mobilising resources, fundraising for the AFCON campaign but under these dire circumstances it will be difficult if not impossible to get any meaningful support from stakeholders.
The whole nation has lost confidence in both the gaffer and our administration.
National confidence has plummeted to the lowest ebb under our watch.
We need to rise and make decisive decisions to save our football.
Executive Committee Member (Competitions)
CC: ZIFA Executive Members”.
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