WARRIORS assistant coach Lloyd Mutasa said they chose players that are currently active and enjoying good form at their respective clubs in coming up with the COSAFA and AFCON squads.
The former Dynamos coach stood in for his boss Sunday Chidzambwa, who was attending to a sick relative, during a media conference in Harare yesterday.
ZIFA president Felton Kamambo, board member Barbara Chikosi, technical director Wilson Mtekede and spokesperson Xolisani Gwesela also attended the function.
“As coaches, obviously, we look at the players who are doing well currently and who have been doing business of late,’’ said Mutasa.
“At the same time, we look at the opposition that we will play, it gives you the direction on the kind of material that you would want to use.
“When we chose the players that have been named, it is an indication that all those 34 have got the pedigree to do duty for the country.’’
Warriors team manager, Wellington Mpandare, said they will use the COSAFA tournament to fully prepare for the Nations Cup.
“To us, the COSAFA tourney is more like training, these are more like training games for us, so we are going into camp in Durban and the two games which we play would be more like training games which I think will add value,’’ said Mpandare.
“Remember, every other game that we have played, even at home, we have to prepare for the game playing against the so-called inferior teams because it sort of helps us in a way.
“We need these COSAFA games . . . so, in as much as most teams are sending their weak teams, it will give us a competitive edge.
“We are going to play in the COSAFA tournament, so we are taking the 34 players to the COSAFA tournament and 30 of them will be registered for the COSAFA tournament and we are going to play two games.
“Then, the other 18 players will go to Nigeria to play against Nigeria on the 8th, remember the COSAFA Cup final is on the 8th.
“So, we play the first two games with all the 30 players there and, then on the 5th of June, 18 players will leave for Nigeria and play on the 8th, and the other five players will then follow to make up the 23 players for the AFCON tournament.’’
ZIFA are also still looking at securing another high-profile friendly match after the deal with Ghana collapsed.