Patrick Kluivert, Edgar Davids jet into Zimbabwe

Patrick Kluivert, Edgar Davids jet into Zimbabwe
Published: 11 August 2017 (760 Views)
ZIMBABWEAN football is poised for a major boost as a delegation led by Spanish footballer Rayco Garcia, which includes Dutch legends Patrick Kluivert and Edgar Davids, touched down in Harare last night on a historic visit.

The visiting European stars are expected to meet President Mugabe, First Lady Amai Grace Mugabe, Sport and Recreation Minister Makhosini Hlongwane, as well as Zifa president Philip Chiyangwa.

Kluivert famously scored the winner in the 1995 Uefa Champions League final for Dutch giants Ajax Amsterdam against AC Milan as a teenager.

He spent six years with Barcelona where he formed a deadly attacking combination with Brazilian great Rivaldo and scored 124 goals in 249 appearances for the Catalan giants.

The forward also starred for the Dutch national team with 40 goals in 79 appearances for the side and remains the third highest scorer in the iconic orange shirt.

He was the Golden Boot winner at Euro 2000 with five goals and also had a stint with AC Milan.

Recently he was the football director at French giants Paris Saint-Germain who shocked the globe by paying a staggering world record fee for Brazilian star Neymar.

"I have been to many parts of Africa but it's my first time in Zimbabwe," Kluivert told reporters on arrival at Harare International Airport.

"It feels good, it feels good to be with my brothers."

It's also the first visit by his Dutch colleague Davids, one of the greatest midfielders of all-time, who featured for Barcelona, Juventus, Inter Milan, Tottenham and Ajax Amsterdam.

He was capped 74 times by the Dutch and won three league titles at home before lifting three league titles with Italian giants Juventus.

Davids was named by World Soccer Magazine as one of the 100 Greatest Footballers of All-time.

Spanish footballer Garcia has been to other African countries such as Tanzania and Uganda where he planned to set up football academies.

The visiting crew are the guests of the Minister of Sport Makhosini Hlongwane, who has facilitated the visit, and their programme will see them discussing football development in this country.

The domestic football family is expected to draw a lot from the expertise of the Dutch legends and their Spanish counterpart in what is a landmark visit to this country.

In a brief statement Deputy Director in the Ministry of Sport and Recreation, Richard Runyararo Mahomva, said the visit will create synergies in sport development in the country.

"The Ministry of Sport and Recreation is pleased to announce that Rayco Garcia and his erstwhile counterparts in FC Barcelona Patrick Kluivert and Edgar Davids will be in Zimbabwe this evening (yesterday)," the statement said.

"It is also a pleasure that Garcia, Kluivert and Davids are also bringing signed souvenir jerseys by Lionel Messi for His Excellency, the President of the Republic of Zimbabwe, R Gabriel Mugabe and Her Excellency, Dr Amai Grace Mugabe.

"Garcia and team are also expected to meet with the president of Zifa, Philip Chiyangwa.

"Moreover, this delegation is also expected to discuss prospects of the soccer development with the Minister of Sport and Recreation, Honourable Makhosini Hlongwane.

"The visit coincides with the Government's adoption of the Community Sport and Recreation club system which envisages the realisation of the ongoing initiative of establishing eight thousand soccer clubs across the country.

"This comes at a time Government is putting in place efforts to lobby for strategic international partnerships to assist Zimbabwe in setting up high performance academies as well as complementing other Government initiatives already in place to promote talent identification and development.

"The visit is crucial as it rightfully resides in the ethos of the Ministry of Sport and Recreation's Sport Diplomacy Programme.

"Moreover, this momentous visit by Garcia, Kluivert and Davids sets in a new precedence in terms of how soccer becomes contextually sensitive to the country's accommodation for interfaces aimed at promoting the development of the sport and recreation sector. This follows the visit to Zimbabwe by Fifa president Gianni Infantino early this year."

Zimbabwe football has been on a rebound after years of decline thanks, in part, to the spirited efforts of Zifa boss Chiyangwa and his management team and a Sports Minister who has demanded that the national game transform itself into a winning discipline.

The Warriors ended more than a decade of waiting for a dance at the Nations Cup finals when they took part in the showcase in January this year where they were the only Southern African nation to feature at the festival.

The Mighty Warriors also made history by playing at the Olympic Games in Brazil while the Warriors also powered to glory in the Cosafa Castle Cup this year.

After years of struggles in the Caf Champions League by local teams, Caps United dumped five-time African champions TP Mazembe to qualify for the group stages, for the first time in the Green Machine history, where they crushed Egyptian giants Zamalek 3-1 in one of their matches.

- chronicle

 0

You May Like These Videos

Comments

There are no comments.

Latest stories

ZimFirst leader promises a new Zimbabwe

by Stephen Jakes | 20 February 2018 | 212 Views

Tsvangirai FOREVER

by Itai Mushekwe | 20 February 2018 | 508 Views

Tsvangirai's son endorses Chamisa

by Stephen Jakes | 20 February 2018 | 343 Views

Dynamos, Caps to face Zambian sides

by Staff Reporter | 20 February 2018 | 109 Views

Build Zimbabwe promises to develop the nation to competitive status

by Stephen Jakes | 20 February 2018 | 70 Views

Pizza Hut launches in Zimbabwe

by Staff Reporter | 20 February 2018 | 135 Views

The New Zanu-PF has shown political maturity and tolerance

by Dr Masimba Mavaza | 20 February 2018 | 112 Views

'Late Tsvangirai forgave Mugabe'

by Staff Reporter | 20 February 2018 | 241 Views

Zimra implements new strategies

by Staff reporter | 20 February 2018 | 90 Views

Obert Mpofu Parly probe over missing $15bn postponed

by Staff reporter | 20 February 2018 | 99 Views

Govt to proclaim bonus pay dates

by Staff reporter | 20 February 2018 | 100 Views

Khupe, Mudzuri, Elizabeth shut out at Tsvangirai funeral

by Staff reporter | 20 February 2018 | 232 Views

Peter Zwide Kalanga unveiled as Ndebele King

by Staff reporter | 20 February 2018 | 139 Views

Tsvangira's Freedom Square last bow

by Staff reporter | 20 February 2018 | 67 Views

'Companies tired of bankrolling Zanu-PF'

by Staff reporter | 20 February 2018 | 89 Views

More drama at Tsvangirai send-off

by Staff reporter | 20 February 2018 | 283 Views

Domestic dispute ends in tragedy

by Staff reporter | 20 February 2018 | 83 Views

Chivayo, business partner clash

by Staff reporter | 20 February 2018 | 68 Views

Kombis banned from CBD

by Staff reporter | 20 February 2018 | 106 Views

Man kills wife's lover

by Staff reporter | 20 February 2018 | 86 Views

Mnangagwa to repossess Chipanga's Farm

by Staff reporter | 20 February 2018 | 141 Views

Mzembi freedom bid thrown out

by Staff reporter | 20 February 2018 | 51 Views

Pupil bites 14 classmates

by Staff reporter | 20 February 2018 | 46 Views

Bosso turn tables on Chicken Inn

by Staff reporter | 20 February 2018 | 36 Views

Zifa lift Peter Dube suspension

by Staff reporter | 20 February 2018 | 54 Views

Matabeleland communities seek apology over Gukurahundi atrocities

by Staff reporter | 20 February 2018 | 32 Views

Govt starts offering STEM scholarships for teachers

by Staff reporter | 20 February 2018 | 35 Views

Mnangagwa's compassionate politics good for country

by Nick Mangwana | 20 February 2018 | 97 Views

Banning second hand car imports not fully thought out

by Staff reporter | 20 February 2018 | 100 Views

Gogo Tsvangirai trending

by Staff reporter | 20 February 2018 | 137 Views

Council clears Egodini for mall project to resume

by Staff reporter | 20 February 2018 | 27 Views

Mobile network operators directed to tackle money transfer hiccups

by Staff reporter | 20 February 2018 | 55 Views

Fierce game of thrones hits Zimbabwe opposition

by Staff reporter | 20 February 2018 | 31 Views

Mugabe birthday low key event

by Staff reporter | 20 February 2018 | 192 Views

Bulawayo flash floods leave trail of destruction

by Staff reporter | 20 February 2018 | 38 Views

Govt moves to promote local motor industry

by Staff reporter | 20 February 2018 | 37 Views

Chiwenga commands political parties to observe peace

by Staff reporter | 20 February 2018 | 42 Views