BY MUNYARADZI MADZOKERE
Zimbabwe-born former England youth international Brendan Galloway has given the country double delight after pledging international allegiance barely a day after the Warriors booked a place at the next Africa Cup of Nations finals in Cameroon.
A promising prospect in English football a few years, Galloway has previously turned down Zimbabwe, with the hope of turning out for England, which he represented at junior level.
The 25-year-old played for Merseyside giants Everton in the English Premier League in 2015 and 2016 before his career took to a nose dive.
He is currently contracted to Luton Town in the English Championship.
Galloway was called up to the Warriors squad for the 2017 Afcon finals, but did not show up, choosing to be part of the England U21 set-up that was competing in the Euro U21 qualifiers.
Warriors coach Zdravko Logarusic named Galloway in his provisional squad ahead of the Botswana tie, but the player could not come because of Covid-19 travel restrictions that affected all the Zimbabwe players based in Englans.
Yesterday, Galloway made the courtesy call on the country’s ambassador to the United Kingdom, Christian Katsande in London.
He was in the company of feted Team Zimbabwe UK chief executive Marshall Gore who has in the past spearheaded efforts to integrate Zimbabwean players in the Diaspora into the Warriors squad.
“Courtesy visit to HE ambassador Retired Colonel Katsande to introduce Zimbabwean born defender Brendan Galloway @brendan_gallo37. Brendan is now keen to play for the Zimbabwe Warriors and to support grassroots football in Zim. Thanks, @TeamZimUK @online_zifa @MistryChipere1 @LutonTown @ZimDiasporaUK.”
Galloway is expected to give Loga a welcome headache in the selection of defenders and also add experience to the Warriors squad, which is looking to go beyond the group stages of the Afcon for the first time.
The defender was born in Harare before relocating to England at the age of six, making him eligible to play for either Zimbabwe or England. He has now chosen to represent his country of birth.
Galloway, who turned 25 on March 17 is reportedly set to join a new club at the end of the season after not being named in Luton Town’s 25-man Championship squad in February.