Zambia 2 Rwanda 0
COACH Honour Janza failed to celebrate Zambia’s win over Rwanda in an international friendly yesterday as he fumed over the decision by the Football Association of Zambia (FAZ) to openly discuss his employment.
Second half goals by skipper Rainford Kalaba and midfielder Allan Mukuka could do nothing to console Janza, who expressed disappointment with FAZ decision to openly state they will employ him as full time coach without first telling him.
Short of stating it was unprofessional conduct, Janza said he was not happy that a matter so demoralising to him was spoken out publicly a day before an international game which he found strange and against team spirit.
FAZ president Kalusha Bwalya informed the FAZ Council at the annual general meeting (AGM) in Kabwe on Saturday that the technical committee after evaluating the performance of the Chipolopolo bench found them to be lesser than what they wanted and had opted for a foreign coach.
When asked about the matter in the post-match interview after watching the Chipolopolo win their first match in 2015, Janza openly expressed his displeasure and struggled to put his emotions in one place.
“That question is taking me where I don’t want to go because I may say something wrong but I must say that I am not happy. It’s not easy to hear that before an international game and it was very difficult for me to concentrate and win this game.
“What is surrounding me is not good. To take such matters to the media or even more to an AGM before I am told, is wrong. It’s a matter for management to talk but I don’t know, I am not happy,” he said.
He said if he was not wanted he was ready to leave, even now but preferred to be spoken to first.
Meanwhile, back on the pitch, two second half goals lifted the spirits of the fans, who were initially rogue and even booed the Shepolopolo as they made way in the stands following their 2-4 home loss to Tanzania last weekend, after a drab first half.
The match started brightly for Zambia with promising forays on the wings but the game soon went flat with the frontline of Bornwell Mwape and Given Singuluma looking vividly off.
Despite Zambia’s dominance, Rwanda’s goalkeeper Oliver Kwizera was only required to make a save after 20 minutes from Mwape who stole the ball from Rwanda defender Ismael Nshutiyamagara but his shot was easily saved by the keeper.
Janza must have read this weakness well as the second half saw Zambia’s attack looking more purposeful after restart and when the Chipolopolo had a free-kick on the edge of the box on 47th minute, Kalaba curled his effort marginally wide.
Two minutes later, Justin Zulu shot from the edge of the box but straight at Kwizera before Janza made two substitutions bringing Mukuka and Winston Kalengo for Jackson Mwanza and Given Singuluma to bring in a new dimension in attack.
With the crowd becoming rebellious, criticising every Zambia ball movement breakdown and opting to cheer Rwanda, Kalaba got the fans back on Zambia’s side.
This was after Mukuka zig-zagged on the right flank to send in a low cross that evaded a sea of players on both ends and left a lurking Kalaba on the far post to tap in with ease the opener.
Zambia doubled the lead in the 80th minute when Mukuka smacked in what could be his best goal ever with a first time low shot after Rwanda failed to deal with Donashano Malama’s low cross from the right.
The best chance of the first half saw Kalaba break loose on the left flank but his shot was partly saved by Kwizera from which a melee ensued as Mwape failed to score from close range as militant Rwanda defence cleared the ball out for a corner on 38 minutes.
By SHAMAOMA MUSONDA At Heroes National Stadium – TIMES