Latest News Editor's Choice

News / National

Barbourfields Stadium and National Sports Stadium ban stands

by Staff reporter
04 Apr 2020 at 08:18hrs | Views
BARBOURFIELDS Stadium in Bulawayo and the National Sports Stadium in Harare remain banned from playing host to Caf-sanctioned international senior men's matches for failing to meet required minimum standards after another inspection conducted last month by a two-man Caf grounds inspection team.

The inspection team comprised South Africans, Derek Blackense and former Bafana Bafana defence stalwart Mark Fish. The two stadiums have, however, been cleared to host youth and women's international matches.

In a statement yesterday, Zifa spokesperson Xolisani Gwesela said they had communicated Caf's latest verdict to the respective stadium owners and what should be done following which another inspection would be conducted between June and July.

"The Zimbabwe Football Association has received the report concerning preliminary inspections done on National Sports and Barbourfields stadiums respectively. The two facilities do not meet minimum standards expected by the Federation of International Football Associations (Fifa) and the Confederation of African Football (Caf). Both stadia are still barred from hosting senior men's competitions, but they are approved to host youth and women's competitions," said Gwesela.

National Sports Stadium Inspections conducted last month were meant to point to Zifa and stadium authorities areas that require attention before the final round of inspections scheduled for June and July 2020.

"Government and Bulawayo City Council have been notified of the recommendations made by Caf inspectors, and the urgent need to attend to issues raised cannot be further emphasised. If work on recommendations is complete, Zifa will invite Caf to conduct another inspection between 15 June and 20 July to determine whether or not we can play senior men's competitions at home," Gwesela said. Before the global crisis caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, authorities had already started massive work at the two stadia to avoid the embarrassment of the  Warriors having to play their home matches on foreign soil.

Gwesela said the First Instance Body (FIB) will conduct weekly inspections to ensure that refurbishments at the two stadia are in line with expectations of Caf and Fifa.

"We sincerely appeal to all stakeholders involved to expedite the process of upgrading our facilities to the required standard so that we avert the grim possibility of playing our home matches abroad," said Gwesela.

Source - chroncile