By Sports Reporter
ZIMBABWE’S bid to qualify for their maiden FIFA World Cup will face a serious test after the Warriors were handed a tough draw for the 2022 World Cup group phase qualifiers, following Tuesday night’s draw in Cairo.
The Warriors were drawn in Group G alongside neighbours South Africa, West African giants Ghana and Ethiopia who they also contest with for a place at the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations.
The group phase qualifiers will get underway in March this year, which is the first international break in 2020.
Only the group winners will advance to the final round of qualifying, where the 10 group winners will be drawn into five two-legged affairs to determine the five sides that will compete in Qatar.
Zimbabwe qualified for the group phase round of the qualifiers after beating Somalia 3-2 on aggregate in the first round of the qualifiers.
The draw comes at a time Zimbabwe are currently looking for a substantive coach for the Warriors to take charge of the qualification campaign.
The coach is expected to be announced before the end of January, with the selection process almost done.
Zifa has said they prefer an expatriate to take charge of the team although the struggling national association could settle for a local coach due to lack of funds.
Zimbabwe and Ethiopia are the only teams in the group who have never qualified for the FIFA World Cup.
Three-time participants, South Africa failed to qualify for the last two editions of the World Cup finals, with their last appearance dating back to 2010 when they were hosts of the global football showpiece.
Ghana, Africa’s joint-best performers at the World Cup with a quarter-final appearance at South Africa 2010, have qualified for the tournament on three occasions.
Ghana are looking to make a return to the global showpiece since their last appearance at Brazil 2014 where they were eliminated in the group stage.
CAF African WC qualifying groups in full:
Group A: Algeria, Burkina Faso, Niger, Djibouti,
Group B: Tunisia, Zambia, Mauritania, Equatorial Guinea,
Group C: Nigeria, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Liberia
Group D: Cameroon, Ivory Coast, Mozambique, Malawi
Group E: Mali, Uganda, Kenya, Rwanda
Group F: Egypt, Gabon, Libya, Angola
Group G: Ghana, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Ethiopia
Group H: Senegal, Congo, Namibia, Togo
Group I: Morocco, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Sudan
Group J: DR Congo, Benin, Madagascar, Tanzania