The Warriors have been barred from participating in this year’s COSAFA following confirmation by the Southern regional football body that Zimbabwe will not be eligible due to its suspension from international football by Fifa.
This year’s edition of the Cosafa Cup competition will be staged from July 5-17 in Durban, South Africa.
The participating teams for the competition will be announced next Tuesday when the draw will be conducted.
However, Zimbabwe, who are currently suspended from international football due to government interference in Zifa’s affairs will not feature in the regional tourney.
“As things stand, Zimbabwe will not be on hand to compete for the title this year after their suspension by FIFA prohibits them from taking part in any football activities,” COSAFA said on Monday.
“However, should that suspension be lifted, they will be welcomed to the tournament with open arms, having had such a rich history in the COSAFA Cup down the years and provided so much quality talent for the region.”
The 2022 #COSAFACup will return to #Durban this year having last been played in the South African coastal city in 2019, as the region’s top nations battle it out for the coveted crown. Read more: https://t.co/lU8EWsTrR3 pic.twitter.com/BlaVd4iIq4
— COSAFA (@COSAFAMEDIA) May 23, 2022
In addition to the exclusion from the Cosafa Cup, Zimbabwe is also facing the grim prospect of missing out on the upcoming 2023 Afcon Qualifiers due to the Fifa sanctions.
According to FIFA, the ban can only be lifted if the Sports and Recreation Commission (SRC) reinstate the suspended ZIFA board.
SRC chairman Gerald Mlotshwa last week said Zimbabwe’s participation in the qualifiers was not a priority, pouring cold water on the possibility of the Warriors taking part in the games.
“Let me be brutally clear about this, Afcon qualifiers are not a priority or a decision for the SRC right now. It’s as simple as that,” Mlotshwa said.