The Zimbabwe Warriors will draw inspiration from history today as they go in their last group game, a decider against Tunisia. Mathematical the Warriors need to beat Tunisia by a score line of 2 goals or more in order to fully guarantee entrance into the quarterfinals. Yes if Algeria were to beat Senegal convincingly our position could be compromised by goal difference. If Algeria draw or lose against Senegal any win could take us to the Promised Land. That said it’s still very much in our hands.
History has it that the Warriors have not lost in any of their last group games in last two previous AFCON appearances. In 2004 they beat Algeria 2-1 in Sousse, Tunisia and in 2006 they beat Ghana 2-1 in Ismailia, Egypt. If omens has it, history will repeat itself in Franceville Gabon today. The message is loud and clear Zimbabwe need to beat Tunisia to today to reach the quarterfinals.
Our game plan is simple today, we need to press high and deprived Tunisia space. We have to congest the midfield and disrupt play forcing Tunisia to make errors and capitalise on their misfortune at all cost. When we retain possession we must use it wisely and avoid losing the ball carelessly like we did against Senegal. We need to be spontaneous in front of goal and vigilant when it comes to half chances. Make every chance count. Let’s give Khama the freedom to run at them willy nilly asking questions at every opportunity. Let’s make good use of ball position and attack the box with more men when the ball goes wide. It’s the numbers in the box that make goals. Let’s be aggressive at set pieces and make them count.
At the back our defence should be highly alert, only play from the back when it’s safe to do so. Let’s be calm and composed even under pressure. Communication is an essence, let’s clear our lines collectively as a unit. Let’s protect our goalkeeper by staying tight and not allowing Tunisia more time on the ball in front of goal. Trust me every little disturbance counts at this level. To the coach Pasuwa, I say be decisive make up your mind. Go with your gut feeling. You’re the man in charge. Be bold make changes if you have too, bring so new faces especially players that want to impress and prove a point. It can help to freshen the squad a bit. Most important we must not conceded early. Tunisia will play with a high tempo. Let’s neutralise them and force them to play outside their comfort zone.
In the build up to the game we caught up with Former Warriors striker and Radio presenter Alois “Gazza” Bunjira was confident that Zimbabwe will win today. “Marshall I have a feeling it’s our day today and we will win the game today. Period”
Gazza also echoed the same sentiments on his face book profile, he wrote “As we get into our final group match against Tunisia, I can only say that we will proceed to the next round. Kallisto Pasuwa and the boys will make history”
We also reached out to The Zifa Head of Communication Xolisani Gwesela who is in Franceville Gabon inside the Warriors camp. Gwesela confirmed that moral was as high as a kite in camp ahead of the Tunisia show down.
“The boyz are in good shape mentally and physical and the coach is confident that the team can deliver and still progress to the next stage. Let’s wait and see”
Former Herald Sports journalist Gilbert Munesti was also very confident of the Warriors chances. He said “Tunisia will be tough but if Knowledge Musona returns today he could be the saviour that can bring us glory. I’m confident we can win against all odds”
As the whole nation expects, our message to the Boyz is simple now, go out and enjoy, express yourselves without fear and make history by powering Zimbabwe to the quarterfinal for the first time. Make your nation proud. Stand up and be counted, don’t hold back or live to regret this is your day. Your destiny is in your hands. Remember the best way to predict your future is to create your own history now. Please win and make us proud. GoWarriorsGo WinWarriorsWin.