Zambia U-17 women’s national football team coach Albert Kachinga says his charges are ready and looking forward to their Group A opening match against Italy in the Fifa U-17 Women’s World Cup Costa Rica 2014 to be played at Estadio Nacional de Costa Rica
Kachinga told fazfootball.com that the mood in camp was good and that the visit by Minister of Youth and Sport Hon Chishimba Kambwili boosted the team’s morale.
The team had a feel of the playing surface at the match venue on Thursday.
“The mood is good and everybody is looking forward to playing Italy. The visit by the Minister Hon Kambwili was a morale booster and training camp in the USA was very helpful because the weather here is similar to the one in California. Coming here early has also helped us to adapt to sleeping patterns because we have had to travel across eleven time zones before arriving in Costa Rica.
“We do know much about Italy but we have looked at their statistics in qualifying games. They did not score or concede a lot of goals which means that they are a compact team. If we play our cards well, we will get a good result,” Kachinga said.
Kachinga added that striker Penelope Mulubwa and defender Mary Wilombe were carrying knocks picked up in training.
“Penelope has a knock on her ankle while Mary has a knock on her knee but we are not worried because they are not serious. The doctors are working around the clock to make sure they are fit before the match,” he said.
Zambia play their first group stage match on March 15 against fellow debutants Italy in the pre-opening ceremony early kick-off at the 35,100-seater Estadio Nacional de Costa Rica.
The match will be carried live by the Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation (ZNBC) with a broadcast time of 00:50hrs (Central African Time) on Sunday.
The team plays its second match at the tournament on March 18 against South American champions, Venezuela. The final group stage match will be against hosts Costa Rica at Estadio Ricardo Saprissa Aymá in Tibas on March 22 at 04:00hrs (CAT).
The top two teams from the each group qualify to the quarter finals which kick off on March 26.