Zimbabwe’s Football Federation have reacted to being thrown out of the 2018 FIFA World Cup, saying the move will hurt the sport in the country. The country was ejected from the competition due to an outstanding debt to former coach Valinhos. The Brazilian coach was owed 67,000 US dollars for his stint as national team coach in 2008.
The sport’s world governing body had ordered the federation to pay the debt in 2012. In a statement released on Thursday, FIFA said that disciplinary proceedings were opened and the deadline for paying the debt had expired. ZIFA, however, say that the move by FIFA was harsh and that the federation itself was already saddled with a debt of 4 million dollars incurred during national team assignments.