BY MUNYARADZI MADZOKERE
WARRIORS striker Tino KadewereÂ has suffered another injury setback ahead of a critical crucial stage of the 2020-2021 French Ligue campaign for his club Olympique Lyon, which could hamper his chances of winning the Marc-Vivien award for the year 2021 tomorrow.
The 25-year-old Zimbabwe international is on the three-man shortlist for the Marc-Vivien Foe Prize, which is awarded to the top African player plying his trade in the French Ligue 1.
Kadewere is looking to shrug off the challenge of Montpelier’s Algerian forward Andy Delort and Congolese winger GaÃ«l Kakuta of Lens when the winner is announced tomorrow.
But the Zimbabwean is set to miss his French top-flight league side Olympique Lyon’s crucial tie at struggling Nimes today in the penultimate round of the league as the club chases UEFA Champions League qualification.
In fact, a combination of a slump in form since the start of the year and two injuries in quick succession including the latest one seems to have heavily dented Kadewere’s chances of landing the prestigious individual accolade.
Lyon coach Rudi Garcia confirmed Kadewere’s injury woes at a press conference on Friday ahead of today’s crucial tie which has a bearing on the club’s participation in the Champions League next season.
Garcia revealed that Kadewere, who was hoping to play a part in his side’s quest to secure a top four finish, had not recovered in time from an adductor muscle injury.
Kadewere has been enjoying a memorable debut season in France’s top league where he has netted 10 goals and weighed in with three assists in 33 matches this term for Lyon.
In comparison, his main challenger for the top award, Algerian Delort, has found the back of the net 14 times in 28 appearances this season whole Kakuta has scored 11 goals in 33 appearances for Lens.
The former Harare City forward has only found the net three times in 17 outings since January.
Kadewere’s last goal for Lyon came on March 12 in a 1-1 draw with compatriot Marshall Munetsi’s Stade de Reims.
He also missed two matches against Angers and Nantes last month due to injury.
However, despite the injury setback Kadewere will still be hopeful of winning the Marc-Vivien Foe award after a memorable debut season.
The award is given to the top African player in France’s Ligue 1 every year in honour of the late Cameroonian international player Marc-Vivien FoÃ©, who collapsed and died on the pitch during an international match in 2003.
It was first presented in 2009 and Kadewere has become the first Zimbabwean to get a nomination for the gong whose winner will be selected by a jury made up of nearly 100 journalists specialising in French and African football.