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Zimbabwean footballers seeing success abroad

by Staff writer
21 Aug 2020 at 19:53hrs | Views
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Zimbabwe is a country of sports lovers. The vast majority of the population watch or take part in sport regularly and the most popular sports are big parts of our culture. While many Zimbabweans love tennis, golf, hockey, rugby, and cricket, the most played and watched sport by far is football.
Like many other countries from across the continent and the world, football fans in Zimbabwe don't just enjoy watching football. Many also like to place bets on the games, often going online to make their wagers. The sports betting market is just as competitive as the football on the pitch, so many bookmakers offer free bets to customers to encourage them to choose them over a competitor.
Zimbabwean Footballing Talent
Much of the country's top footballing talent plays for the 18 teams that compete in the Zimbabwe Premier Soccer League, the nation's top-flight league. Some of the most successful footballers in the league include Leonard Tsipa, Knox Mutizwa, Nelson Maxivisa, and Tendai Ndoro.
However, some of Zimbabwe's greatest footballers have managed to earn themselves positions in clubs abroad. Some have moved to Europe, competing in some of the most famous and prestigious leagues, including France's Ligue 1 and England's Premier League.
While others have decided to stay a bit closer to home, playing in the leagues of other African nations. South Africa is the country with the highest number of Zimbabwean players, with 39 at present, split across the PSL and 1st Division.
Here are some of the Zimbabwean players enjoying success in other countries.
Marvelous Nakamba
Originally from Hwange, Marvelous Nakamba plays as a centre midfielder in the English Premier League for Aston Villa. He joined the club a year ago for a fee of €12 million.
Shortly after signing, Nakamba played his first game against Crewe Alexandra in an EFL Cup match, helping his team to secure a 6-1 victory. As a celebration for being just the fourth player from Zimbabwe to take part in the English Football League, Nakamba's village announced plans to erect a statue in his honour.
His first Premier League game was an uneventful fixture against West Ham which ended without a goal.
In his first season with the club, Nakamba has made 29 appearances, racking up an impressive 1,835 minutes played. He hasn't managed to score a goal, although as a defender he's only scored a total of three in his entire professional career.  He has, however, managed to pick up five yellow cards ranking him joint 79th out of 575 players.

Philana Tinotenda Kadewere
Known to most at Tino, Philana Tinotenda Kadewere was born in Harare where he played for his local team at the start of his senior career in 2015. Shortly after that, he was loaned to the Swedish side Djurgårdens IF. He was retained by the club for the following two seasons, signing for them directly in 2016.
The striker scored 13 goals from 43 appearances during this time before moving to, the French Ligue 2 side, Le Havre. He fared well there too, scoring 23 goals from 43 appearances, impressing Ligue 1 side, Lyon who signed him in 2020.
He's yet to make an appearance for his new team though, having been loaned back to Le Havre until the end of the 2020 season as part of the deal the two clubs struck.
Cuthbert Malajila
Born in Rimuka, Cuthbert Malajila began playing for the Zimbabwean side Chapungu United in 2005. The forward picked up 25 goals from 29 appearances during his two years for the club before moving to the Highlanders in 2007. He made his first appearance for a foreign team in 2010 when he signed for the Tunisian side Club Africain who also loaned him out to the Libyan team, Al Akhdar. This made him the first Zimbabwean to play in Libya.
Malajila made his first signing with a South African team in 2012, joining Maritzburg United for one season. During that time he played in 41 games and scored 15 goals.
Since then, Malajila has enjoyed remained in South Africa, playing for Mamelodi Sundowns, Bidvest Wits, and Black Leopards.

Source - Byo24News