Zimbabwe centre back Teenage Hadebe has issued an apology following his own goal that denied the Warriors a home victory over DR Congo in a 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier at the National Sports Stadium.
Zimbabwe had taken an early lead through Khama Billiat and with the visitors pressing for an equaliser, Hadebe turned in Issam Mpeko’s cross past goalkeeper George Chigova in an attempt to clear danger.
“I am very sorry for disappointing the whole nation after scoring the own goal that eventually denied the team what would have been a remarkable achievement for the country,” Hadebe told The Herald.
“We were leading and pressing the opponents hard as we wanted to score another goal but unfortunately, I am the one who scored the own goal that afforded the opponents the equaliser.
“I am sorry to the fans, to my teammates and even to myself. These things happen in football and I am happy I tried to lift my spirit after that mistake.
“I was down, I mean down after that miscue which resulted in the goal and I never thought I would come out of that incident and still perform well.
“I told myself not to get down, I had to work hard and try to be positive for the good of the country.”
Despite the mistake, Hadebe however put up a stellar performance with crucial interceptions that kept at bay Congolese dangermen Yannick Bolasie and Cedric Bakambu.
With Alec Mudimu suspended, Hadebe partnered FC Platinum’s Kelvin Moyo at the heart of defence.
Group G leaders Zimbabwe remain three points clear of second-placed DR Congo.