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Budding Zim booters take flight for Belgian bonanz...

Budding Zim booters take flight for Belgian bonanza

Philemon Jambaya

With hearts full of hope and eyes set on the stars, the U19 football team of Samuel Centenary Academy, a beacon of the Zion Christian Church, has embarked on a glorious sojourn to the hallowed grounds of Belgium.

For six resplendent days, these talented young footballers shall not only have their talents honed by expert trainers, but they shall also grace the emerald fields in friendly matches against Belgium’s top teams, all the while basking in the aura of professional games and training sessions.

This odyssey to Belgium presents a golden opportunity for these Zimbabwean footballers, these young lions, to etch their mark on the international arena.

They shall tread the same hallowed grounds where Zimbabwean footballing legends like Knowledge Musona, Honour Gombami, Nyasha Mushekwi, and Moses Chunga once left their indelible mark. It is a stage that beckons them to showcase their prowess, a springboard to potentially propel them into the illustrious leagues of Europe.

The ZCC, a bastion of faith and community, deserves resounding applause for nurturing these young talents and fostering their dreams. This trip transcends the boundaries of mere competition; it is a testament to the church’s unwavering commitment to holistic education and the cultivation of well-rounded individuals.

As coach Malvern Moyo himself so eloquently expressed: “We have had a lengthy ban as a nation and interactions with the rest had minimised. It is then good that we have had churches that do not just preach but give youth space to explore talents in all facets.  We are taking this trip as a learning experience not just results but a chance to develop our youth for the good of the nation. We hope that other churches do likewise.”

The young players themselves are brimming with excitement and gratitude. “We thank the church for the opportunity which many of our youth don’t get,” said one player.

“We want to make a mark represent our nation and the church as well.” Another echoed the sentiment: “This is a good experience for some of us to break into Europe after showcasing our talent.”

May their boots dance across the Belgian pitches with grace and purpose, and may their hearts brim with the knowledge and experience gleaned from this extraordinary voyage.

May they return not only as honed athletes, but as ambassadors for their nation and their faith, their spirits ablaze with the unyielding flame of sporting passion. The future of Zimbabwean football burns brightly in their hearts, and the world awaits to witness their brilliance unfold

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