BY MICHAEL KARIATI
THE current inactivity in local football has forced renowned Zimbabwe player agent George Deda to relocate to Zanzibar where he hopes to continue negotiating deals for out-of-action domestic players, whose careers are currently on hold due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Deda, who recently fronted gifted midfielder Last Jesi’s move to cash-rich Sudanese giants Al Hilal, says he is in Zanzibar because he has to be where the action is unlike in Zimbabwe where action was last seen in November 2019.
He says he wants to rescue talented Zimbabwean players from prematurely ending their careers as there are slim chances of football action returning to Zimbabwe anytime soon.
“I have not allowed Covid-19 to take me down. I realised there was no football action in Zimbabwe, and so I decided to move to Zanzibar where football is in full swing. So far, so good,” says Deda, who is based in Stone City.
The player agent also facilitated Partson Jaure, Tatenda Mukuruva, Devon Chafa and Nqobizitha Masuku’s moves to Zambia’s Buildcon. He was also at the centre of Tendai Ndoro’s move to Orlando Pirates and later Mpumalanga Aces as well as Joseph Mwanza’s move to Dongtam in Vietnam.
Only last week, Deda facilitated the move of top Ugandan goalkeeper Mathias Kigonye from Zambia’s Forest Rangers to top Tanzanian club Azam. Azam is also home to Zimbabwe Warriors striker Prince Dube who turned out for Highlanders in Zimbabwe.
Apart from Dube, Deda also took Bruce Kangwa, Obrey Chirwa and Never Tigere to Azam, a club which all of a sudden has risen to challenge the dominance of Simba Stars and Young Africans in the Tanzanian Premiership.
However, the Zimbabwean player manager says he now wants to see both the club and the player benefit heavily especially this time when Zimbabwean football has been hit hard by Covid-19.
The former sports magazine publisher said he was busy identifying clubs in East and West Africa for the Zimbabwean players so that they earn decent salaries while at the same time furthering their careers.
“The challenge in Zimbabwe right now is that we are going to see the careers of most players finishing without them kicking a ball again. Instead of the players sitting at home and doing nothing, why don’t the clubs loan out the players to clubs in active leagues?”
Deda said he was working on opening such loan opportunities which would see all the three parties involved benefiting, but more importantly the Zimbabwean clubs.
“I don’t see anything wrong with Dynamos receiving $20 000 from St George for a loan deal on King Nadolo. The club receives money for a player who remains theirs; the player gets exposure and a decent salary. St George gets Nadolo’s services. It is a win-win situation,” he said.
Deda said he has spoken to a number of Ghanaian clubs who have expressed interest in such loan arrangements and what was only left was the Zimbabwean side of the bargain.