WARRIORS skipper, Knowledge Musona, says they feel they can collect some points in the back-to-back AFCON qualifiers against Algeria.
The Smiling Assassin arrived in the country yesterday aboard the same flight with the England-based trio of Tendayi Darikwa, Adam Chicksen and Jordan Zemura.
This will be Zimbabwe’s first competitive international assignment since last November when they upstaged Zambia 2-1 in their backyard.
“It always feels good to come back home and represent the country,” he told The Herald.
“We are looking forward to the upcoming games against Algeria.
“There isn’t much to say. We just have to do it, not to talk. We have to go there and try to play the game to win and, of course, when they come here we also have to aim to win.
“So, we are going to do our best as a team. We just want to promise our fans that we are going to do everything we can to collect some points in these two games.”
The 30-year-old forward played a leading role in Zimbabwe’s qualification in the previous two editions of the AFCON finals in Gabon and Egypt.
Musona combined twice with Khama Billiat when Zimbabwe beat hosts Zambia 2-1 in Lusaka to move second in Group H with four points.
Algeria lead the race, on six points, following wins over both Zambia and Botswana.
The Desert Foxes are unbeaten in their last 20 games in all competitions in a period stretching two years.
Their last home match, in an AFCON qualifier was a five-goal destruction of Chipolopolo in Algeria.
However, in their second match against Botswana, they showed they were human, too, as they struggled to win 1-0 in Gaborone.
Star forward, Riyad Mahrez, did not play in that match against the Zebras but is available for the duel against the Warriors.
Matches between Zimbabwe and Algeria, however, have produced interesting results with their last meeting at the 2017 AFCON finals in Gabon ending in a 2-2 stalemate.
Musona was part of the game but only lasted 12 minutes after suffering an injury.
The captain was also joined at the airport yesterday by new Orlando Pirates hotshot Terrence Dzvukamanja, who had arrived earlier from South Africa.
There was boundless joy for Zemura, who was met at the airport by ecstatic members of his family.
The 20-year-old has experienced a phenomenal rise in the last two seasons, and was recently handed his first team cap at English Championship side, Bournemouth.
This is the first time that the fullback has joined the Warriors for national team duty.
Interestingly, he will be turning 21 on Thursday when Zimbabwe play Algeria.
The rising star, who can play either right or left back, says representing Zimbabwe has always been his dream.
“Currently, I am transitioning into breaking into the first team and playing competitively,” he told our sister newspaper, The Sunday Mail, at the weekend.
“So, at the moment, I am ready and can’t wait for the opportunity (to play for the Warriors.
“It is something that I have always wanted to do.
“I received the call-up from the manager and had a good conversation with him, and now things are looking good and I want to be part of this team).”
Scotland-based David Moyo and Adam Chicksen are also looking to have their full national team caps.
Musona said he was delighted by the commitment shown by some Zimbabwean players born and raised in the Diaspora towards playing for their mother country.
“I am glad that they are here and we welcome them. They are part of our team and they are Zimbabweans,” he said.
“So, we just want to welcome them to the team and make sure that they adapt quickly to the new environment and also to the new teammates that they are going to meet.
“It’s very important that they get a good feeling in training and in camp. I would like to say they are really welcome.”
The players immediately headed for camp were they joined a small group of early birds that included goalkeeper Elvis Chipezeze, Divine Lunga, Ovidy Karuru, Prince Dube, Alec Mudimu and Talbert Shumba.
Also expected yesterday was Khama Billiat, Jimmy Dzingai, Tafadzwa Rusike, Kuda Mahachi and Scotland-based forward, David Moyo.
The last batch, which features Teenage Hadebe and Marshall Munetsi, is expected today.
Warriors coach, Zdravko Logarusic, has been conducting some training sessions with those who have been in camp since Sunday.
The Warriors are expected to leave for Algeria tonight.
Elvis Chipezeze (Baroka, SA), Talbert Shumba (Nkana, Zambia).
Jimmy Dzingai (Nkana, Zambia), Victor Kamhuka (Ayeyawdy United), Alec Mudimu (Sheriff Tiraspol, Moldova), Jordan Zemura (Bournemouth, England), Teenage Hadebe (Yeni Malatyaspor, Turkey), Divine Lunga (Golden Arrows, SA), Tendayi Darikwa (Nottingham Forest, England), Adam Chicksen (Notts County, England)
Ovidy Karuru (Unattached), Tafadzwa Rusike (Zesco United, Zambia), Kuda Mahachi (Supersport, SA), Knowledge Musona (KAS Eupen, Belgium), Terrence Dzvukamanja (Orlando Pirates, SA), King Nadolo (Dynamos), Marvelous Nakamba (Aston Villa, England), Khama Billiat (Kaizer Chiefs, SA)
Tino Kadewere (Olympique Lyon, France), David Moyo (Hamilton Academical, Scotland) Prince Dube (Azam, Tanzania)