Thomas Sweswe

Footballers tackle drug abuse

Raymond Jaravaza

OVER 90 players attended the Footballers Union of Zimbabwe (FUZ) Out of Contract players training camps that are running simultaneously in Bulawayo and Harare. 

The Harare camp contributed more players with 60 athletes thronging Motor Action Sports Club while slightly over 30 players attended the Bulawayo camp at the Heath Streak Multi-Sports Centre.

The training camps started on Monday and end on Saturday.

“For this year the main emphasis of the discussions will be on stopping drug abuse as the union has noted with great concern, the increase in drug abuse by players both male and female.

“Substance abuse of ‘bronco’, ‘diazepam’ and other drugs are slowly killing players so the union wants to take this opportunity to raise awareness on the effects of drug abuse and instigate behaviour change in players,” said FUZ secretary-general Thomas Sweswe.

High quality training sessions have been designed to enhance physical abilities, develop and increase tactical as well as technical skills and to achieve the harmony necessary to perform at the highest level of football.

Championship winning coach Callisto Pasuwa — who recently led Malawian side Nyasa Big Bullets to a league title — former Warriors gunman Agent Sawu and Mighty Warriors coach Sithethelelwe “Kwinji 15” Sibanda are taking the Bulawayo players through their paces.

In Harare, former Dynamos and Ngezi Platinum gaffer Tonderai Ndiraya, Naison Muchekela and former Mighty Warriors coach Rosemary Mugadza are in charge of the training camp.

“The Bulawayo and Harare coaches will then assemble their squads and the two teams will play a match in Harare, at a yet to be announced stadium, and we have invited coaches from different clubs in the Premier Soccer League and Division One to scout for talent.

“This presents a perfect opportunity for out of contract players to show invited coaches what they have to offer and hopefully a number of players will be signed,” said Sweswe.

The FUZ team will also address players on matters to do with contractual issues, relationship between a club and a player, contract negotiation skills and litigation issues.

“With better funding FUZ wishes to take this to all regions to ensure that every player in the country gets a chance to showcase talent and be scouted. The training programme is free for all professional players as this is a FUZ initiative,” he added.