Gabon 2017: Zimbabwe Warriors in good spirits

Warriors captain Willard Katsande is optimistic that Zimbabwe will make it to the knockout stages of the Afcon finals.

By and SuperSport

Zimbabwe Warriors linkman Khama Billiat says Zimbabwe needs to stick to the game plan and avoid making silly mistakes in the knockout stages of the Afcon finals to be staged in Gabon this month.

Much is expected from the Zimbabwe Warriors who are the only representative of the Southern African region at the continental football showpiece.

While Zimbabwe will go into only their third African tournament in what seems to be a mammoth task in Group B which includes continental powerhouses Algeria, Senegal and Tunisia, Billiat told reporters that Zimbabwe will relish the chance to go in as underdogs, and should go in and fight, as soccer is a tactical game which boils down to the 22 players on the football field.

“We must avoid making silly mistakes because football at this level is a tactical game, and if you loose concentration the other tearms will punish you and you concede soft goals,” said Billiat.

Warriors captain Willard Katsande was optimistic that Zimbabwe will make it to the knockout stages of the Afcon finals.

The Warriors began training this week to prepare for their Afcon Group B which includes continental powerhouses Algeria, Senegal and Tunisia.

Katsande and his troops appear to be in good spirits, amid reports that some players had paid for their own flights and expenses i n order to be in the Warriors squad.

They kick off their campaign on 15 January, against Algeria in Franceville, before taking on Senegal four days later and then wind up their group matches, against Tunisia on 23 January in Libreville.

With Zimbabwe’s only two previous Afcon campaigns in 2004 and 2006, ending at the group stage, Katsande feels this time they can go all the way to the quarter finals.

“The coming days will see us putting in some hard work, because we all know we have a tough task in Gabon. We will not let anything to chance as we prepare,” Katsande said.

“When we look at how our opponents are being treated as giants, we actually like it when people see us as underdogs. That is going to push us to the next round, because we have a point to prove. That is our target and it is achievable. We can do it and when we are in Gabon, we will not be looking much into the giant status of our opponents.”

When the Warriors began camp on Wednesday, they were under the watchful eye of assistant coach Saul Chaminuka, while head gaffer Callisto Pasuwa arrived on Thursday, from Boxing Day’s 0-0 international friendly match against Ivory Coast.

Warriors striker Nyasha Mushekwi arrived in camp on Thursday to join the rest of the team after being excused from the first day of training.


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