The Minister of Tourism and Hospitality Walter Mzembi confirmed Brazil will play a full strength squad at the National Sports Stadium next Tuesday. Brazil will fly in for the match before returning to their South African base in the evening.
The government, through the ZTA, had been lobbying the Samba Boys for the last three years to come to Zimbabwe. Brazil arrived in South Africa on Thursday. Brazil initially turned down a request to play the Warriors and demanded an appearance fee of US$1,3 million.
Mzembi said the government had managed to secure the funds which would be bankrolled by a consortium of businesses including NetOne.
Brazil rarely play against African opposition and Zimbabwe look set to be only the fifth team from the continent to face the South Americans since 1980. Only Cameroon, Egypt, Nigeria and South Africa have played Brazil in any official form of the game since Zimbabwe attained independence in 1980.
Zimbabwe are also eyeing two more international friendlies against other World Cup finalists before the tournament gets underway in South Africa on June 11.
If all goes well, Nigeria will be in Harare on June 6 while an Asian finalist is also in discussions with the local authorities for a friendly. This might result in the re-scheduling of the CHAN final qualifier, second leg tie against the Seychelles set for June 6.
Zimbabwe and Brazil sealed a deal that would see Dunga’s charges travelling to Harare paid for.
It will be the biggest match by the national team and chances are the National Stadium will be filled to capacity as local fans have an opportunity to watch the pre-tournament favourites in action.
Brazil has announced the two international friendlies against Zimbabwe and Tanzania. The game against Tanzania has been set for June 7 in South Africa. The friendly matches are part of the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority’s spirited efforts to have the country maximise on the staging of the World Cup in neighbouring South Africa.