Collen Nikisi, FC Platinum Correspondent
FC Platinum winger Rahman Kutsanzira has admitted he was a little surprised to have been called into the Warriors squad.
Kutsanzira and Kelvin Madzongwe are the only two locally based players in Norman Mapeza’s squad for the back-to-back World cup qualifiers against Ghana.
It caps a fine few months for Kutsanzira who has shown versatility playing high up the pitch as an attacking winger or fullback.
“I thought it would never happen, to be honest am prepared to make the most out of it and repay coach Mapeza for believing in me again,” said Kutsanzira.
Apparently Kutsanzira’s last dance with the Warriors came in 2011 at the 35th edition of Cecafa cup hosted by Tanzania.
Interestingly Norman Mapeza was the national team coach in charge of the developmental side.
Rahman Kutsanzira’s first senior Warriors call-up for the forthcoming World Cup qualifiers is a deserved reward for a player whose career has been nomadic until his undoubted promise and talent flourished under the influence of Norman Mapeza.
Rakocha is a seasoned winger naturally, he has been asked to do a job for Mapeza at the back due to injuries to the preferred players.
However, he has taken to the role like a duck in water and rightly deserves this national team call up. For some it may be a call that divides opinion, but I think it is a calculated selection from Mapeza for the simple reason that he knows the type of play expected from the coach. Kutsanzira has so far performed with aplomb.
As a senior player in the FC Platinum team, he understands what is expected of him in and out of position. Much like James Milner to Klopp, Rahman will play wherever the coach needs him to with little fuss and maximum effort. For me that is a true professional.
In an era where players are quickly discarded for the new and younger ones, one has to give props to Mapeza for reinventing the marauding winger into a modern-day fullback. He can attack and still swing in the crosses.
More importantly, he also can defend and shut out opposition wingers. Maybe because he has played in that position it makes it easier for him to anticipate attacks and dribbles.
I am confident Kutsanzira can add value to the national team in terms of experience and understanding the tactical requirements in the philosophy of the coach.
He has been a trusted performer for Mapeza and played all CAF Champions league outings this year in that position hence his selection is no surprise.
Zimbabwe Squad vs Ghana:
Martin Mapisa (Zamora CF), Talbert Shumba (Free State Stars), Washington Arubi (Marumo Gallants)
Alec Mudimu (Torpedo Kutaisi), Brendan Galloway (Pymouth Aygle), Bruce Kangwa (Azam FC), Jordan Zemura (AFC Bournemouth), Onismor Bhasera (SuperSport United), Rahman Kutsanzira (FC Platinum), Teenage Hadebe (Houston Dynamo), Tendayi Darikwa (Wigan)
Blessing Sarupinda (Sekhukhune), Farai Madhanaga (Marumo Gallants), Kelvin Madzongwe (FC Platinum), Khama Billiat (Kaizer Chiefs), Kuda Mahachi (SuperSport), Marshall Munetsi (Stade de Reims), Never Tigere (Azam), Marvellous Nakamba (Aston Villa), Perfect Chikwende (Simba FC), Thabani Kamusoko (Zesco).
Knowledge Musona (Al Tai), Knox Mutizwa (Golden Arrows), Terrence Dzvukamanja (Orlando Pirates)