THE request by Zifa to be allowed to admit fans into stadiums for Warriors games was ill informed as none of the stadia in the country is fully homologated, B-Metro Sport has been briefed.
Zifa had hoped CAF – Confederation of African Football – would clear the National Sports Stadium (NSS) to accommodate at least 5 000 to watch a reverse Warriors versus Ghana fixture on 12 October.
But it emerged that Zifa were fully aware that the giant stadium is partially homologated but the association was hoping, against any meaningful expectations, that CAF would look the other way.
Homologation is the granting of approval by an official authority and in the case of Zimbabwean stadiums, CAF have indicated that local stadia do not meet internationally set standards.
Work still needs to be done at the NSS with the stadium being granted partial homologation to stage games while improvements are done on the facility.
“Zifa are lucky that CAF has allowed the Warriors to play at the National Sports Stadium. We have been told to fix a number of issues at the stadium but nothing has been done to date.
“Where are the bucket seats that CAF wants installed at the stadium? It’s not surprising if the Warriors play their home games in a foreign country if the reluctance to fix the stadium continues,” said a source at the football mother-body.
Neighbours Zambia have been given the greenlight to have 20 000 fans at the Heroes Stadium in Lusaka for their clash against Equatorial Guinea.
The Heroes Stadium is fully homologated.
The situation is gloomy in Malawi and Mozambique.
The Malawians will have to travel to Morocco for their ‘home’ matches while the Mozambicans must travel to neighours South Africa for the same non-compliance issues.
Zifa spokesperson Xolisani Gwesela could not be reached for comment.