Zimbabwe: Forest, City Deal in Doubt

THE proposed twinning of English Championship side Nottingham Forest with Harare City has suffered a still birth with the initiator of the alliance, British coach Mark Harrison, hinting the partnership could now benefit Highlanders.

The Englishman, who hails from Derby, a city close to Nottingham, initiated the deal when he met the chief executive of the Nottingham Sports Community, Graham Moran, while on his annual vacation last year.

“Regarding the Harare City/Nottingham Forest twinning deal, I would say it is pretty much dead, especially after I left,” said Harrison.

“There is now a lack of contact between the two clubs. When I was still with Harare City, we were very much in constant contact with Nottingham Forest and a deal was close.

“I am still in constant touch with Nottingham Forest and I attended one of their home games in December as a guest, a couple of weeks before I joined Highlanders.

“(It’s now more than likely that) Highlanders have the chance to twin with Forest (Nottingham) if we can get back to normal.”

Harare City football club chief executive, Tafadzwa Bhasera, insists the deal is still in the pipeline.

“The deal is pretty much alive. Had it not been for Covid-19, which has disturbed everything in terms of football, we would be talking of something else,” said Bhasera.

“What I can say for now is the deal is on.

“Nothing has changed and the arrangement will go ahead once things get back to normal. This deal has more to do with the Harare Municipality and their Nottingham counterparts.

“These two cities enjoy cordial relations and they want to incorporate the sporting faculty as well. So, as long as the two cities are in good standing, the twinning arrangement is still on.

“The deal will see the two teams embarking on exchange programmes with our coaches going for attachments at Nottingham Forest while there will be possibility for our players to join that club as well.”

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