HARARE – Ian Gorowa is expected to be unveiled as the new Zimbabwe football team head coach this week.
The 42-year-old former Zimbabwe international – who has made a mark as a coach in South African domestic football, is set to replace interim coach Klaus-Dieter Pagels – with his appointment as new Warriors gaffer expected to be announced as early as this week.
The Daily News understands that Zifa have offered Gorowa a long-term contract and the former Black Rhinos and Dynamos forward has agreed in principle to take over the reins, although financial guarantees remains a sticking point.
Gorowa was last year appointed by Zifa as the Warriors’ special assignments coach, based in South Africa, but he had never worked closely with the team until the just-ended Cosafa Cup in Zambia.
Mounting speculation that Gorowa will eventually become the next Warriors head coach was given added weight when he was seen in the company of the Warriors in the Zambian Copperbelt last week.
Although it was initially reported that Gorowa was in Zambia in his personal capacity, he was later photographed on the eve of the final between the Warriors and Zambia, observing the team’s training session from the sidelines, clad in the Zimbabwe technical staff’s Diadora tracksuit.
After the training session at the Arthur Davis Stadium in Kitwe, Gorowa joined the team in a huddle on the field.
Gorowa is currently out of full-time employment since leaving his job as chief scout of South Africa giants Mamelodi Sundowns in August last year, but he is highly-rated in that country, where he earns an extra income working as a television pundit on Supersport.
Accordingly, luring Gorowa back home to take over as coach of the national side will require substantive financial investment and commitment from Zifa, although the temptation of coaching a national side will prove too strong for Gorowa.
After Saturday’s Cosafa final against Zambia in Ndola, Gorowa flew back to Zimbabwe with the rest of the team on a flight chartered by Zifa, for further talks with the federation.
German national Pagels is expected to travel to Zimbabwe for the African Nations Championships (Chan) tournament in Seychelles on Thursday, but a highly-placed source said Gorowa could actually be put in charge for the Chan trip.
In his short tenure as acting coach, Pagels won the admiration of some local football followers, who hailed him for delivering an attacking brand of passing football, rarely seen in the Zimbabwean game.
But the 63-year-old coach was not without his detractors, who often critiqued his team selection and lack of results since taking over in February.
Faced with a tough decision, Zifa finally decided to part ways with Pagels, who initially came into the country on a government to government agreement between Zimbabwe and Germany as the association’s technical director.