ALLIEWAY NYONI in Zvishavane
The Zimbabwe Football Association (Zifa) has introduced rural constituency leagues that will help in identifying and grooming talent from grassroots level.
The first pilot program was launched last weekend in Zvishavane-Ngezi constituency with ten teams from each ward recieving full training kits that include uniforms, boots, balls among other things from Zifa.
Zifa spokesperson Xolisani Gwesela said the program will benefit rural areas only and the football mother body will provide all technical support that include referees, coaching trainings, technical and physical trainings to ensure professionalism is upheld from these levels.
“As Zifa we will ensure that this program reaches every rural area within Zimbabwe and every rural folk must be accorded the same opportunity to play and showcase his or her talent just like urban people. A lot of talent has been going down the drain without being identified but with such a program many stars will be identified,” he said.
Zifa Midlands Province chairperson Pevious Mathe said such a football structured program will romp in the girl child in the near future after the pilot project has yielded good results.
“This is a pilot project but as Zifa we will include females in the future benefiting the same as males. With the hope of developing the women’s league in the country.
The event was graced by Zvishavane Ngezi Member of parliament Dumezweni Mawite who encouraged youths to take full advantage of this program as football is no longer an ordinary sport for entertainment but has become an employment hub.
“Football has now become a source of employment and we have seen young people becoming millionaires from this sport. I want to encourage all the youths in these rural areas to utilise this program. Some will become coaches, referees, physical trainers among other opportunities brought by the sport,” said Mawite.
Zifa technical director Wilson Mutekede and Board member Stanley Chapeta were also in attendance.