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Brito wants playing turf fixed

by Staff reporter
15 Jul 2022 at 09:04hrs | Views
WITH less than two months in Zimbabwean football, Highlanders coach Baltemar Brito has seen the worst of the local game, with the latest being the standard of playing fields.

As he heads into his fourth Premiership match against Whawha in Gweru tomorrow, the Portuguese coach raised concerns about what lies ahead at Ascot Stadium based on videos and intel he gathered in preparation for the encounter.

Most of Zimbabwe's facilities fall far short of meeting Fifa and Caf standards and Brito believes poor playing fields affect the development of the game.

Brito's concerns also come at a time when Mutare's Sakubva Stadium has been provisionally banned from playing host to Premiership games, with Zifa advising the local authority to attend to the facility that teams have complained about.

Manica Diamonds, Tenax,  Cranborne Bullets and Black Rhinos that were using Sakubva now play their home matches at Vengere Stadium in Rusape, a facility which teams have previously complained about.

The first time Brito complained about the playing field was when Highlanders played Ngezi Platinum Stars on a muddy Baobab Stadium a fortnight ago.

Besides poor fields affecting players' technical abilities, Brito feels they also shortchange fans of quality football.

"I want to make a suggestion to people who belong to football to care more about football fields. The fields are not good. We need to give good football to fans. We're working for the fans and we try to give them a good spectacle, but if the fields are not good, it means we're not respecting fans who come for the games.

"For example, with us, one day we work on one part of the field, then on the following day we work on the other half as we try to preserve the field so that we have good practice.

"There is a need to understand that a good field does well for the development of players. So, if we care about the fields, we care about the development of football in Zimbabwe. I don't want to be annoying about that subject, but we need to talk about fields. People here have talent, but conditions to develop talent don't permit. My suggestion is, look into the fields," Brito said.

Turning to the Whawha game, Brito said through their analysis, their opponents are dangerous at home, hence they will give them the respect they deserve while hunting for maximum points.

"What we know is that their turf isn't good and at home Whawha fights opponents well. From our analysis using home and away matches, at home they are not a bottom side, but a mid table team as they have more points at home.

They get points from that turf; they are a positive team at home, fight and need points as they want to survive relegation. These are some of the elements that gave us a general image of what to expect.

"So, it will be a tough game, but as we have said before, we're Highlanders and we go with a positive mind. We've got respect for Whawha, but we're going there for three points," said Brito.

Source - The Chronicle
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