On a dark day for Zambia football following death of Kabwe Warriors coach Arnold Mtonga over the weekend, two of his protÃ©gÃ©s inspired the Zambia Under-20 national team to an emphatic 7-1 win over Seychelles this afternoon here at KaNyamazane stadium in Mpumalanga.
Mtonga died on Sunday in a road traffic accident in Kabwe just eight months after taking charge at Warriors from Levy Chabala.
Meanwhile back to today’s game, Seychelles took shock 2nd minute lead as Zambia looked lax that saw Ian Mellie slotting in the opener leaving George Lwandamina’s boys stunned.
However, Zambia quickly recovered from the early setback.
Influential striker Emmanuel Mayuka who was one of Mtonga’s key strikers in his tenure prior to his tragic death equalized in the 9th minute to score the first of his two goals of the day.
Three minutes later Judge Mukandawire made it 2-1 as the Zambia comeback begun after he finished off a rebound from Michael Katongo’s earlier effort.
Mayuka could have added his second in the 23rd minute with a cheeky lob over Seychelles goalkeeper Julio Toulon but Kevin Qatre was quick to clear the ball before it crossed the line.
Then enter Warriors playmaker Henry Banda.
Banda’s cross from wide on the right found Mayuka who rifled in from the near left post to make it 3-1.
Mayuka could have dispatched at least five more chances had he been more composed in front of goal in the opening half.
Banda on the other hand was turning soul provider for Zambia who needed an emphatic score line to help keep them in the hunt for a semi-final place on Friday in a very tight Group B.
His cross in the 28th minute found Red Arrows winger Simon Lupiya in front of the goalmouth who headed in the ball to make it 4-1.
Judge Mukandawire too was a benefactor of Banda’s vision and craft and the Arrows striker headed in Zambia’s 5th on the half-hour mark to see Zambia go 5-1 into the break.
Seychelles threatened after the break but Zambia stayed firmly in control with55th minute entrant Musonda Munaile, son of ex-Zambia and Zanaco player Emmanuel Munaile, showing some promise with some good passing and vision in the middle of the park.