Thursday, July 18, 2024
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Mighty Warriors Looking To Regain Their Status At The Cosafa Cup

Zimbabwe’s new look Mighty Warriors squad is looking to do good at this year’s Cosafa championship and bring back their status as one of the most competitive side at the regional tournament.

The team started on a good note on Friday after edging Lesotho 1-0 in their opening Group C match of the COSAFA woman’s championship being held in Gauteng South Africa with Privilege Mpeti providing the solitary goal for Zimbabwe.

The Mighty Warriors will take on Namibia and Botswana on the 9th and 11th of October respectively to complete their group matches.

The top team in each group and the best-placed runner-up across the three groups will qualify for the semifinals.

Zimbabwe who are back at the tournament after missing last year due to FIFA suspension, will be hoping to improve from their previous two participations.

The Mighty Warriors were once one of the dominant force at the tournament having won the championship once in 2011, reached the finals two times, winning bronze once and finished fourth once in their eight participations in the tournament, but have not been able to pass the group phase in the past two competitions- prior to the FIFA suspension in 2022.

In 2020 the Mighty Warriors battled in the group games losing 1-0 against Tanzania and Botswana to finish without a point in the group and failed to progress from the group stages. In 2021, the team once again was knocked out in the group phase after finishing second in the group with Tanzania progressing to the semi-finals as group winners.

From being ranked 83rd internationally and 8th in Africa at the end of 2017, the team have slumped to position 125 in the world and 19 continentally this year, and are hoping to improve their rankings by doing well at the COSAFA championship.

The return of former coach Shadreck Mlauzi who had a decent term with the Mighty Warriors from 2015 to 2017 taking them to the Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil is a good thing considering his expertise and past experience in building new teams.

This year the Mighty Warriors have included new blood in the squad as they look forward to the future and reclaim their position as one of the powerhouse in Southern African women’s football.

South Africa have won seven of the previous 10 COSAFA Women’s Championships played, with Zimbabwe (2011), Tanzania (2021) and Zambia (2022) the other teams to lift the trophy.

*image credit to ZIFA media

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