Home » Sports » Cursebert Dube – A Gamble Too Far [analysis]

THE Zimbabwe Football Association (ZIFA) has plumped the depths of breathtaking incompetence during Cuthbert Dube’s reign.

ZIFA’s finances are in shambles. The association’s property is being auctioned left, right and centre as creditors converge over the carcass of the decaying ZIFA.

On the pitch, Zimbabwe has failed to qualify for any major tournament since Dube took over in March 2010.

Coaches are changed at a whim, and almost always never paid their severance packages.

In the five years that he has been in charge of the national game, Dube has only felt bothered just ONCE to watch the Warriors in action — an exhibition match with Brazil that was played at the National Sports Stadium in 2010.

Just think about that for a minute: just one game out of 47 that the national team has played, home and away.

But through this fine, appalling mess, Dube goes to sleep everyday nurturing a messianic fantasy that he is the best man for the job. The ZIFA councillors that re-elected him last year are all in his pocket and dare not to raise a finger.

What is worse, the man who really should be leading from the front to stop the rot, Sports Minister Andrew Langa, appears compromised. He has made trips to Russia, China and the 2014 World Cup in Brazil with Dube.

Hefty allowances were provided.

But if anyone ever doubted that Dube is driving our football in reverse with no brakes, these doubts should have perished yesterday after FIFA announced Zimbabwe would not be participating in the 2018 World Cup qualifiers over a US$60 000 debt owed to the former national team coach, Jose Valinhos. FIFA state they wrote to ZIFA in April 2013, warning them about the possibility of the sanctions imposed yesterday if this debt was not cleared within 180 days. Dube and his ever-obedient CEO, Jonathan Mashingaidze, neglected to take the necessary action or simply elected to ignore FIFA.

There can be no doubt that this is the biggest reversal for Zimbabwean football ever. We have hit rock bottom and the responsibility for this fine mess should fall squarely on Dube’s shoulders.

Where do we go from here? Langa must wake up and smell the coffee. ZIFA councillors must muster courage and do the honourable thing: show Dube the exit door. Dube, with suicidal belligerence, has shown in recent weeks that he is prepared to drag the nation down the gutter along with him. When the courageous Deputy Sports Minister Tabetha Kanengoni-Malinga signalled that the government may step in and disband ZIFA, Dube and Mashingaidze petitioned FIFA begging the world football governing body to threaten us with a ban. FIFA rules forbid government interference.

Fortuitously, it is Dube — not the government — who has brought Zimbabwe the shameful ban from FIFA. The government now has nothing to lose — other than also being forced out of the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers — if it steps in and cleans up the five-year mess that Dube has created.

It is a sacrifice that a majority of football lovers in our country are prepared to endure.

Yet it shouldn’t really get that far. Cuthbert Dube, or is he Cursebert, has gambled and lost. If he has any pride left, he should simply walk. That would be his greatest gift to Zimbabwean football.

Source : The Herald