Eight minutes later, Matampi redeemed himself with a brilliant save
leaping to his right to tip over Miya’s ferocious freekick from
range behind for a corner.
DR Congo coach Florent Ibenge made
changes, Jose Mpoku coming off for Jonathan Bolingi while Chancel
Mbemba was hauled off for Jacques Maghoma, a move aimed at
stabilizing a midfield that was dominated by the Ugandans.
Uganda will next face Zimbabwe next Wednesday while DR Congo face
a hilly task against hosts Egypt who won their opening match 1-0
against Zimbabwe on Friday night.
The AFCON kicked off Friday and will go through July 19 where 24
African teams will fight for the most prestigious football title in
Zimbabwe future at AFCON hangs
in the balance as players threaten to walk
HARARE Zimbabwe (Xinhua) --
Zimbabwe’s participation at the
2019 AFCON finals in Egypt is reportedly hanging in the balance
Thursday night after a stalemate between the senior men’s team - the
Warriors - and national soccer governing body Zimbabwe Football
Association (ZIFA) over player dues.
State-controlled newspaper The Herald, which is
accompanying the team to the African showcase, said ZIFA had advised
the players they were contemplating the possibility of withdrawing
the team from the tournament.
This followed a number of meetings between the two parties which
had ended in stalemates.
The players had threatened not to resume training Friday night
unless they were paid the remaining 12,500 U.S. dollars each by the
According to ZIFA officials, 5,500 U.S. dollars would be paid
into their accounts on Friday.
That amount includes the 2,500 U.S. dollars ZIFA said they had
secured for each of the players, and the 3,000 U.S. dollars for each
of them, which was promised by the fundraising committee.
That would have left the Warriors needing 5,000 U.S. dollars
appearance fees, and 3,000 U.S. dollars bonuses for the draw against
Uganda ahead of the match against the DRC.
However, things deteriorated sharply during the night and the
Warriors ended demanding their entire dues by Friday or they would
not train, the newspaper said.
Following the stalemate, ZIFA officials then sent spokesman
Xolisani Gwesela to check with the Confederation of African Football
(CAF) the cost of withdrawing from the tournament.
"Gwesela has been sent to establish how much it will cost to
withdraw from the tournament because of events that happened today,"
A number of players also confirmed they had told the ZIFA
officials they were ready to abandon camp and fly back home.
"We were called in and told of the developments about the
possible withdrawal from the tournament and we told them that we
were ready to go home because we believe they haven’t fulfilled our
contracts," one of the players said.
"We have an agreement with them and it has to be fulfilled."
The players said even though they played the match against
Uganda, a chunk of their appearance fees, 2,500 U.S. dollars had not
It also emerged that players Tino Kadewere and Tafadzwa Kutinyu
were set to be sent home as a disciplinary measure after they fought
in camp. Kutinyu is currently not playing in the tournament after
sustaining an injury during training.
Midfielder Kuda Mahachi was also set to be sent home for
allegedly violating the team’s disciplinary code when he went on
social media to question why he was being sidelined from selection.
Zimbabwe face the possibility of being banned from a number of
AFCON finals, in what would be a huge blow to the next generation of
its footballers, if the team pulls out of the on-going tournament,
the paper warned.
The team still has a chance to progress to the knockout stage of
the tournament if it wins convincingly against DRC following a 1 -1
draw with Uganda on Wednesday and a 0-1 loss to hosts Egypt in the
opening game last Friday.