Nakamba feels for relegated Vitesse Marvelous Nakamba

Bruce Chikuni Sports Reporter

DUTCH side Vitesse Arnhem might not be one of the most popular Netherlands teams, at least for many Zimbabwean football fans.

Vitesse have for decades lived in the shadows of the more illustrious Dutch clubs such as Ajax Amsterdam and PSV Eindhoven.

But for Antony Nakamba, Vitesse retains a special place in his heart.

Antony is the father of Zimbabwe captain and Luton Town midfielder Marvelous Nakamba.

Vitesse have been relegated from the Dutch top-flight — the Eredivisie, albeit, via a boardroom decision that saw them being docked 18 points.

Antony Nakamba told Zimpapers Sports that the Vitesse situation had cast a shadow on his family, given that the Dutch outfit had given his son a platform to showcase his talent. “Everyone in the family is very upset because Vitesse gave us hope and they made Marvelous the player he is today.

“The fact that he received his first national team call-up while playing for this side is something which can never be erased in his career,’’ Antony said.

Marvelous could in, fact suffer a double blow should Luton fail to wriggle themselves out of the English Premiership relegation zone.

The Warriors skipper has been a long-term injury casualty.

He sustained a knee injury in November last year during the World Cup qualifier fixture against Nigeria in Rwanda.

Marvelous was at Vitesse when he broke into the Warriors during the 2015/16 season.

But when the Dutch Football Association deducted 18 points from them last week, it automatically sealed their fate as they were already battling for survival in the drop zone.

This development also ends their 35-year romance with the Eredivisie.

Vitesse was brutally punished for violating the Dutch football licensing system.

The club was also accused of submitting incorrect half-yearly financial figures and their inability to demonstrate that they did not have ties with former Chelsea owner, Roman Abramovich.

Now Antony Nakamba and his family will be praying that Luton manages to secure at least nine points of the available 12 to escape relegation. Marvelous’ deal with Luton runs until 2026.

“Even after he left to join Club Brugge in Belgium, we never stopped from watching and attending their games whenever we were in Europe.

“I don’t know what led to this but as a family, it’s disappointing for us’’.

He also revealed that Marvelous had made significant progress towards recovery and was getting ready to return to action.

“Marvelous is getting ready for action that’s what we are hearing from the team and we just hope they will find a way to remain in the EPL.

“It’s also our hope that Marvelous will be fit to help the Warriors in the coming World Cup qualifiers.’’

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