Warriors captain Knowledge Musona’s move from KV Oostende to Belgian giants Anderlecht in the same league at the onset of the current European season, hardly six months into his new job, is turning out to be a nightmare for Zimbabwe’s star player with doubts already cast over his long term future with the club.
BY Kevin Mapasure
Musona is enduring a tough time at the former champions, just managing two starts in the league and one in the Europa League.
Most of his appearances have been from the bench since concluding the big money move, but the last couple of weeks have seen the situation deteriorate for the Zimbabwe international who has now been omitted from the squad altogether in one of the two last matches before he featured in the other as an unused substitute.
His best chance for a start is probably in the Europa League match against Croatian champions Dinamo Zagreb tonight, with him having to anxiously await if coach HeinLast Vanhaezebrouck will give him a starting berth so he could prove his worth and stake a claim for a place in the first 11 in league matches.
In the first three matches of the season, Musona made substitute appearances against Kortrijk, where he was given a four-minute run as well as against his former club KV Oostende, where he played the last 15 minutes and provided an assist.
In their third match of the season, Musona was again summoned from the bench, with only 17 minutes of regular time remaining.
He afterwards won his first start against bottom side Royal Excel Mouscron where he played behind the team’s two strikers and was hauled off 13 minutes before the final whistle.
The 28-year-old former Kaizer Chiefs and Hoffenheim attacker then got the nod in the blockbuster clash against champions Club Brugge.
Musona vindicated the coach’s decision with a 19th minute strike, his only goal for the club so far this season, but he did not last the full match as he was taken off on 65 minutes with his team going on to lose the match 2-1.
In the following match against Antwerp, striker Musona was back on the bench, but did not play a part, only making a 65th minute appearance against Genk in another game.
The Zimbabwe international then returned to the starting line-up in the Europa League Group match against Spartak Trnava where they lost 1-0 and, thereafter, things turned for the worse as he was left out of the squad for the match against Standard Liege before he was recalled for the weekend clash against St Truiden. In the match, Musona was an unused substitute.
Musona’s situation may be a cause of worry for Warriors coach Sunday Chidzambga, who dropped Kuda Mahachi from the team due to lack of game time at Orlando Pirates.
Zimbabwe Warriors will clash with DRC in a Group G back-to-back Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers next week and Musona leads the 23-man squad put together by Chidzambga.
The Warriors captain had a couple of missed opportunities against Congo Brazaville in the last match, but provided the assist for Khama Billiat’s goal that gave Zimbabwe a crucial point.
If called upon against Dinamo Zagreb tonight, Musona will be looking to make a statement and hopefully earn the right for a run against Zulte-Waregem on Sunday.