UNCERTAINTY continues to grip the future of Zimbabwean soccer players in Zambia with a proposed foreign quota system set to take effect in a few months.
Zambia is home to many local players who in recent years joined the great trek to the northern neighbours in search of greener pastures.
But the Zambian football authorities are concerned with what they call ‘flooding of their top flight league with foreign players’ thus compromising development of local talent.
In some cases, Zambian teams field entire squads consisting of foreign players only. Only two clubs – Green Buffaloes and Green Eagles – out of the 18 Super Division teams in Zambia, are without foreign players in their squads.
Football Association of Zambia (FAZ) president Andrew Kamanga recently announced that a new quota policy would be implemented at the start of the 2020 /2021 soccer season. The Zambian league kicks off in August.
“We’ve had a chat with the clubs, at some point we had a club which had almost only foreign players. We sat with clubs and decided that going forward we will start implementing the quota system,” Kamanga was quoted as saying.
The new system is expected to limit clubs from fielding 11 expatriates in competitive games. Presently, Zambian clubs can play as many immigrants as they want.
For Zimbabweans in the books of clubs like Buildcon FC, which has a high number of foreign players, the new quota system spells trouble for their careers.
Takundwa Chimwemwe plays for Buildcon FC and is a worried man.
“We have no idea how many foreign players they will allow per team and which players the coach will settle for so it’s really worrying because no one knows will happen in the next few months,” he said.
Buildcon FC, one of the financially stable teams in Zambia, has 17 foreign players from different countries in Africa. Dominic Chungwa, the former Caps United striker, now in the books of Lumwana Radiants, is also in the dark about his future.
“The club is still to communicate with us on the new quota system so I can’t comment on where I stand,” said Chungwa.
Zim players in Zambia:
Joel Ngodzo, Takudzwa Chimwemwe, Donald Teguru (Buildcon FC); Evans Katema (Zanaco); Dominic Chungwa, Kelvin Bingala(Lumwana Radiants); Collen Phiri (Kabwe Warriors); Dennis Dauda, Ocean Mushure (Lusaka Dynamos); Ali Sadiki, Nelson Maziwisa (Kabwe Warriors); Jimmy Dzingai (Power Dynamos); Tafadzwa Rusike, Thabani Kamusoko ( Zesco United )