Petros Kausiyo Deputy Sports Editor
WARRIORS coach Sunday Chidzambwa has revealed he has been impressed by the qualities of Leyton Orient forward McCauley Bonne and was eager to have him in his squad for the final AFCON showdown against Congo-Brazzaville on March 24.
Bonne’s name was a notable absentee from the 28-man squad provisionally called up for the big encounter at the National Sports Stadium.
It emerged that Bonne’s handlers had delayed in submitting the players’ documents, which resulted in delays in his Zimbabwean passport being processed.
Chidzambwa said he had watched a number of videos of Bonne’s matches and liked what he saw.
“I was watching Bonne’s clips and he is a very good striker and he scores some very good goals,’’ said Chidzambwa.
“I would have loved to have him here. I think he can bring a different dimension but that is not to say we don’t have enough material.
“We have picked a squad which has cover for every position in the event that we might suffer some injuries before that match.’’
Bonne’s manager, Mathew Halford, also sent his apologies to the Warriors via a message to team manager Wellington Mpandare
“It is with deep regret and disappointment that we have been unable to source the correct documentation in order to secure Bonne’s Zimbabwe passport.
“This has been as a result of personal circumstances. However, Bonne has every intention of accumulating the required documentation in order to be available for selection as soon as possible.
“Bonne has dreamt to play for Zimbabwe and extend his goal scoring abilities in England to Zimbabwe. He sends his most sincere wishes for the squad in the pending qualifiers and looks forward to joining them in the near future,’’ said Halford.
Despite having to wait a little longer before having to call on Bonne’s services, Chidzambwa believes the Warriors have the pedigree to cross the finish line and book their place among the 24 nations that will line up in Egypt.
The Warriors just need to avoid defeat against the Red Devils to secure one of the two spots available from the group.
“It wasn’t an easy group at all, it was a very tough and I think we did very well in all our assignments, except maybe for the away game against Liberia.
“Now, we are playing at home and with the crowd behind us we should, at least, achieve our goal which is to qualify for the Nations Cup,’’ Chidzambwa said.
He also pleaded with the supporters to transform the National Sports Stadium into a hostile arena for the visitors on March 24.
“Our supporters should be patient with the players. We need to allow them to make some mistakes and correct them,’’ said Mhofu.
“It is not in every game that you get early goals and, therefore, the supporters just need to be patient.’’
The 67-year-old history-making coach also revealed he was not going to tinker much with the side for a game of this magnitude.
“A lot has been said about the squad and a lot of speculation has been made but we need to be very careful on the need for consistency.
“We may have one or two changes but the rest of the team that started this campaign, and which has been playing, needs to be kept intact.
“We just hope that injuries will, this time, not affect much of our plans,’’ Chidzambwa said.