THE Footballers Union of Zimbabwe are set to honour outstanding players at the inaugural FUZ awards ceremony tonight where international stars like Marvelous Nakamba and Tino Kadewere are also set to be honoured.
The biggest prize at the banquet, to be held at the Venue in Harare this evening, will be the FUZ Player of the Year, which is open to both men and women footballers.
The best player of the season will be voted for by fellow players with the winner to be picked from six nominees to be represented at the gala from both men and women’s football.
The FUZ best International/Foreign player award will honour a player plying his/her trade in foreign leagues.
There is also going to be a FUZ Team of the Year in which all registered players had the opportunity to choose the 11 best players by position.
The team will comprise the best goalkeeper, the best defenders for each position, the best midfielders and best strikers.
This will be for both the male and female teams.
The organisation’s secretary-general, Thomas Sweswe, said they have also set aside the FUZ Legend award, voted for by a panel of football veterans and sports experts.
The legend will be honoured for his/her contribution to the game of football.
FUZ president, Desmond Maringwa, is also set to present the President’s award which will recognise a player who has made a huge impact in football.
The winner of the FUZ Media award will be chosen by a panel of football veterans and, for this year, it will honour journalists who have been in football for a long time and have made an impact.
The main sponsor of the event is Zororo Phumulani, powered by Doves.
The other sponsors are Vaya, Old Mutual and Ariel Sport.
Footballers, officials from SRC, ZIFA, PSL, former players and club representatives are expected to grace the event.
Sweswe said the awards event was an extension of their initiative to complement PSL in recognising outstanding players monthly and at the end of the season.
“As an organisation, which represents the welfare of players, FUZ has introduced the monthly Players Player of the Year awards for both male Premier League players and national women’s league players with the hope of expanding it to lower divisions in the near future.
“Football is a universal game with the potential of making a difference in people’s lives but the owners of the game have not been given enough opportunities to participate in matters that affect them.
“In Zimbabwe, and abroad, the majority of the awards are voted for by journalists, captains and other football stakeholders who are not the players themselves.
“Based on this background FUZ introduced the Players Player awards to be voted by players for players,” said Sweswe.