NATIONAL soccer team assistant coach Masautso Mwale has declared the home-based Chipolopolo squad ready for Sunday’s rescheduled African Nations Championship (CHAN) first leg qualifier against Zimbabwe.
And Mwale is impressed with the four players summoned to bolster the squad for the crunch ‘Battle of the Zambezi’ CHAN final qualifier set for Harare’s Rufaro Stadium.
Mwale, who is standing in for Chipolopolo coach Herve Renard, said in an interview after a morning training session at Lusaka’s Independence Stadium yesterday that the team is well prepared for the match.
He said with focus, discipline and hard work, the Chipolopolo will be favourites to overcome bitter rivals Zimbabwe, who are still reeling from the COSAFA Cup final defeat.
“We need to be focused, disciplined and work hard for us to maintain our dominance over Zimbabwe. It is not going to be easy. Zimbabwe will want to avenge the COSAFA Cup final defeat, a thing that can also work to our advantage.
“We have a good squad of players but competition is still on. Four have to be dropped, unfortunately that is football so the players need to work hard to find themselves in the final team,” Mwale said.
Mwale said the four players summoned to bolster the squad are competing favourably for places in the final team.
Mwale summoned goalkeeper Geoffrey Silavwe, Green Buffaloes trio of striker Percy Billyoti, midfielder Felony Sitonya and defender Gift Wamundila to the squad.
“They should, however, be ready in their minds and continue to work hard to establish themselves. The mood in camp is that of a team eager to do battle,” he said.
The 20-member Chipolopolo squad is scheduled to leave for Harare today.
Zambia vs zimbabwe – ‘Battle of the Zambezi’
Zimbabwe vs Zambia -‘Battle of the Zambezi’