Loga’s US$90k golden handshake
Eddie Chikamhi Senior Sports Reporter
ZIFA’S ill-fated experiment with hapless Croatian coach, Zdravko Logarusic, has cost the association a cumulative bill of over US$223 000 in salaries and bonuses over the last 20 months.
And, all they have to show for such expenditure, is just a single win in 14 matches.
His five points which he picked in World Cup/AFCON matches, a victory over Botswana and two draws against Bafana Bafana and Algeria, cost an average of US$44 600 per point.
In terms of goals, the four goals which the Warriors scored under his guidance in either a World Cup/AFCON qualifier,came at an average cost of US$55 750 per goal.
The four goals were scored by Tino Kadewere, Knowledge Musona and Prince Dube, against Algeria, and Perfect Chikwende, against Botswana, in Francistown.
Loga, who was sacked this week following a disastrous run as Warriors head coach, has already withdrawn about US$133 000 in salaries since his appointment in February last year.
It has also emerged the 55-year-old coach, who turned the Warriors into the whipping boys of the continent, has been offered a US$90 000 severance package by the association as a parting gift.
Under their contractual agreement, Loga has been earning a monthly salary of US$7 000.
The association are paying him off US$35 000 for the remaining five months of the contract and an additional US$55 000 for his role in the Warriors’ 2021 AFCON qualifying success.
ZIFA could not confirm the finer details and the exact figures which the Croatian will be entitled to, as part of his divorce package, citing the need to respect employer/employee confidence.
“We do not discuss such information in the press. It’s a fact Loga has been relieved of his duties and efforts are being made that he will get all that is due to him so that we do not run into problems in the future,” said ZIFA spokesperson, Xolisani Gwesela.
However, close sources yesterday said Loga has since been paid US$35 000, with the remaining US$55 000, set to be settled at a later date.
Loga demanded the US$55 000 as part of his contractual agreement with ZIFA, where he would get 10 percent from the US$550 000 grant, which is given by CAF to all the teams thatqualify for the AFCON finals.
“Discussions have been taking place with the coach and it was agreed he will be getting US$90 000, as part of his contract termination dues,’’ the sources said.
“Remember he has been on a US$7 000-per-month contract, so that means he will be paid off the remaining five months.
“That one has since been settled and there is a balance of US$55 000, which will be paid once the money comes through from CAF.
“He is entitled to this money as per the contract he signed with ZIFA.
“There was a clause in the contract which stated that the coach will receive 10 percent of the US$550 000 that CAF hand out to every team that qualifies to the finals of the tournament.
“So, once the money is in, Loga will get his share.’’
The Croatian dragged the Warriors over the finishing line, despite getting just four points, from a possible 12 in the four games he was in charge.
Loga took over the Group H campaign from Joey Antipas, who had worked as interim coach, following the resignation of Sunday Chidzambwa, at the conclusion of the 2019 AFCON finals in Egypt.
Zimbabwe had four points, from two games, when Loga arrived in February 2020.
He started off with a 1-3 defeat away to Algeria and then forced a 2-2 draw at home, in the reverse fixture, against the Desert Foxes.
The Warriors went on to beat Botswana 1-0 away, to seal their place at the finals of the tournament, to be held in Cameroon.
Loga suffered his second defeat in the qualifiers when Zimbabwe lost 0-2 to Zambia.
Still Loga, who has been condemned by the statistics as the worst coach ever to lead the Warriors, is set to smile all the way to the bank in an arrangement which Antipas, who set the foundation for the campaign, will feel gives him a raw deal.
Loga is also leaving the country as the only Warriors coach who didn’t win even a home match.
ZIFA have committed to pay off the money to avoid the fiasco they have faced in the past involving foreign coaches, like Valinhos and Tom Saintfiet.
Loga was given the long rope by ZIFA, despite the poor statistics during his reign.
The association had, for long, shielded the underperforming coach, despite the pressure from the football community.
They had maintained that Loga’s mandate was qualifying for 2021 AFCON and the 2022 World Cup.
But, they were forced to act, after the coach failed to meet a revised target of four points, from the opening two matches of the World Cup qualifiers.
ZIFA were not amused with the results, from the first two matches of the World Cup qualifiers, which saw the Warriors draw against a makeshift South Africa and then fall to a shock 0-1 defeat to Ethiopia.
Zimbabwe currently sit bottom of Group G, which also includes Ghana.
The Warriors have one point and ZIFA have tasked interim coach, Norman Mapeza, to try and revive the campaign.
Mapeza will begin his mandate with back-to-back clashes against the Black Stars next month.