By Sports Reporter
WARRIORS coach Zdravko Logarusic is optimistic of registering his first win as Zimbabwe coach when his side hosts Algeria in an Africa Cup of Nations Group H reverse fixture on Monday.
This is despite his side’s 3-1 defeat against the same opponents on Thursday.
After Thursday’s defeat, Monday’s match will be a must-win tie for the Warriors if they are to at least stay in second position and within touching distance of the leaders and clear of third placed Zambia.
Algeria, who stretched their unbeaten run to 21 games, top the group on nine points from three matches, three clear of the Warriors who are on four points from three matches while Zambia is a point adrift in third place.
Speaking after watching his side play second fiddle against the Algerians in the first half, Warriors coach Logarusic called upon his charges to approach the match with the same intensity they displayed in the second half.
“I am very optimistic that we will get a result in Harare. You saw when we changed the system in the second half, it worked very well and we were pegging them back,” he said.
“That’s the same intensity we need to apply when we host them in Harare. All I can say at the moment is we are going to put the shift on and try to win at all costs. I will not have much time to talk about the defeat against Algeria in Algiers. We were very naive. We conceded all the goals from mistakes and failed to take our own chances. We had to change tactics in the second half and it worked.”
The Croatian also bemoaned the Warriors’ frailties at the back and failure to convert their chances which he blamed on the limited time they had together ahead of Thursday night’s defeat.
“We were too naive for this level of the game. But like what I have always said, it all comes down to lack of proper training. We only trained as a team once on the night prior to the game.
“My players are also not fit due to the fact that most of them are not playing regular first team football at their respective teams. Nonetheless, I don’t have much time for postmortem, instead we have to play good football and get a result on Monday at the National Sports Stadium.
“Definitely we gave Algeria too much respect and we need to change that when we play them again in Harare.”