Zimbabwe name new caretaker coach as search goes on for Baltemar Brito successor

Jairos Tapera

Zimbabwe name new caretaker coach as search goes on for Baltemar Brito successor

Festus Chuma 19:22 - 24.05.2024

Zimbabwe's national football team has appointed an interim coach for upcoming World Cup qualifiers and regional tournament amid selection delays.

Former Black Leopards head coach Jairos Tapera has been named as the caretaker coach of Zimbabwe's national football team by the ZIFA Normalisation Committee. 

This decision comes just in time for the upcoming 2026 FIFA World Cup qualifiers, where Zimbabwe will face off against Lesotho and South Africa. 

Tapera’s appointment follows his recent tenure at Zimbabwe Premier Soccer League team, Manica Diamonds.

The ZIFA Normalisation Committee elaborated on the reasons behind this interim arrangement in a recent statement. 

"Following the purposeful and expansive process conducted by the ZIFA Normalisation Committee to appoint a substantive Head Coach for our senior men's national team, my committee and I are pleased to announce that the process has reached its finalization. However, due to ongoing discussions with the selected candidate, we are unable to make the necessary announcement at this stage," the statement read signed by chairman Lincoln Mutasa 

With crucial matches approaching, the committee felt it was imperative to have a leadership team in place. 

"Given that our World Cup qualifiers versus Lesotho and South Africa are imminent, the delay in the conclusion of this appointment has necessitated the appointment of an interim coaching team that will take charge of our two FIFA World Cup Qualifiers as well as the COSAFA Senior Men's Tournament that starts immediately after these qualifiers. 

This will assist the ZIFA Normalisation Committee to conclude the substantive appointment of the Head Coach of the senior men's national team meticulously, thoroughly, and successfully," the statement continued.

The interim team, led by Tapera, also includes Takesure Chiragwi and Saul Chaminuka as Assistant Coaches, with Sunday Chidzambwa serving as the Technical Advisor. 

This group will not only guide the team through the World Cup qualifiers but also into the subsequent COSAFA Men's Tournament.

The committee expressed confidence in this temporary leadership, emphasizing the national unity and support needed. 

"This team will take charge of the senior men's FIFA World Cup Qualifiers against Lesotho and South Africa and will also lead the team into the COSAFA Men's Tournament immediately after these assignments. We have full confidence they will ably lead the team. It is our hope that the nation will rally behind the team and unite to achieve the success we all so dearly desire," the committee affirmed.