Gladiators to face Botswana in Olympics qualifier
The Brave Gladiators are confident of victory on Friday against Botswana in their 2020 Tokyo Olympics Games Qualifier as the final 20 players were sent off by Minister Erastus Uutoni at Football House this week according to the NFA website
Namibia play Botswana over two legs with the first leg away in Gaborone on 5 April while the return leg is in Windhoek four days later and on Monday morning, the Girls Centre Conference Room was packed to capacity as Minister of Youth and Sports Erastus Uutoni witnessed the announcement of the travelling 20 ladies by coach Brain Isaacs.
Isaacs revealed new Brave Gladiators captain, Spanish-based Zenatha Coleman who plays for Valencia with Emma Naris as vice-captain while Anouchka Kordom who plays in the United States is not considered due to injury.
Motivating the team, Sports Mnister Uutoni told the players to play for each other and brand Namibia. “Go and play for your country. People should know about us. You should market your country and in the game you should play as a team and do not keep the ball too long. Play to score and win and prepare hard and do us proud”.
The minister added that it was high time that other players of other races such as “coloreds” and “whites” are included in the team as well.
“We need to pull together as a nation. Whites should also play football, boys and girls and form part of the national team and it is possible and necessary to get a strong foundation for our boys and girls to get into sports and fell as part of this nation. We can do this”, Uutoni said.
At the same occasion, midfielders Beverly Uueziua and Millicent Hikuam presented their professional contracts as they embark upon new chapters in their football careers. Uueziua will go and play in Taiwan for FU Jen Catholic University Girls on a one-year renewable contract starting on 28 April 2019 while Hikuam stands a chance to play alongside compatriot Anouchka Kordom for Corban Warriors in the United States on a football scholarship pending academic test results before 30 April 2019. She will then join the University for four years.
FIFA referees Vistoria Shuungula and Astino Twanyakukwa (fourth official) and Olivia Amukuu and Paulina Joel the assistant, will also travel to Tanzania on Tuesday for their first assignment on the continental they handle the match between Tanzania and DR Congo this weekend.
The Gladiators leave for Gaborone on Tuesday with the game set for Friday and the two teams will travel to Windhoek on Saturday morning to come and prepare for the second match on 9th of April at the Sam Nujoma Stadium in Windhoek.
The winner over the two legs will face South Africa in the second round. Zambia or Zimbabwe will then await in the third round. They are will be fourth and fifth round with the winner of the fifth round qualifying for the 2020 Olympic Games and the losers to try their luck against Chile for a place in Tokyo.
Here are the Brave Gladiators to Botswana: Mellissa Matheus, Ester Hamukwaya, Lydia Eixas, Ndapewa Katuta, Emma Naris, Uerikondjera Kasaona, Lovisa Mulunga, Lorraine Jossop, Twelikondjela Amukoto, Veweziua Kotjipati, Millicent Hikuam, Beverly Uueziua, Memory Ngonda, Juliana Blou, Julia Rutjindo, Asteria Angula, Kylie van Wyk, Zenatha Coleman, Thomalina Adams and Anna Marie Shikusho. (NFA)