Zambia and Under-23 defender Hichani Himoonde said he is not taking his two starts at the Africa Cup for granted and working towards the 2010 qualifiers.

“I was shocked when Coach Patrick Phiri told me to warm-up in the match against Cameroon,” Hichani said reflecting on that forgettable 5-1 defeat to Cameroon that he didn’t want to remember so soon after with memories still fresh in the nation’s minds.

The Dynamos defender replaced stuttering Kennedy Nkethani midway through the first half of what was turning out to be a torrid evening against Cameroon for the Zanaco defender who’s place Himoonde made his own thereafter.

“I thought I was going to be part of the “B” or “C” team at the Africa Cup and wasn’t expecting to play any matches,” Himoonde said.

The Lusaka Dynamos defender, who was handed his first three caps by Phiri at the 2006 Cecafa Cup in Ethiopia, said the level of play at the Africa Cup was a quantum leap from what he had previously experienced.

“The Africa Cup is a deferent level of football altogether where you have to think very fast or you are finished,” Hichani said.

He said it was different from spontaneous, physical and cavalier football at Under-23 and Under-20 added that he but got into the groove of things by the game three in Zambia’s 1-1 draw with Egypt in their final Group C match.

“I can’t look back now, you know,” the Dynamos defender said looking very relaxed and happy to be back in Kabwata where he was born, raised and played his street football were the famous Breakpoint Bar now stands when it was previously a public park.

It was quite an experience for the Dynamos players to be part of the grueling three-week pre-Africa Cup tour of Europe and North Africa with the national team.

“It was constant travel and we were almost living on aeroplanes and buses traveling from game to game and training and from one country to another on our way to Ghana,” the 21-year-old giant defender said.

“But I thank Coach Patrick Phiri for giving me an opportunity to play in the team.

“And when someone gives you a chance like that especially at the Africa Cup you take it with two hands.

“But that doesn’t mean you have to relax and am going to work very hard to keep my place in the team now for the 2010 qualifiers.”

Himoonde added that he had no problem with the criticism that he was too raw and inexperienced to have been thrust into the big lights of the Africa Cup.

“One has to leave with criticism and get the good from the bad and work very hard on your weakness because life is like that,” Himoonde said.

“I have been learning a lot since I started playing top-level with Dynamos in 2006 and when I went top Kaizer Chiefs last year for my first trials I also came away with something new,” he said.

“That’s football.”

Himoonde had an unsuccessful two-week trial spell at Chiefs but is optimistic another one would come soon-but with hard work.

However, he refuses to discuss his future at Dynamos and beyond at this time.

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98 COMMENTS

  1. Fellow bloggers, when I stated that James Chamanga was hot property one response was a sneer that went “Chamanga hot property? No wonder we are coming back from the Nations Cup.” I cant remember who said it but what does he have to say about the story that Chamanga is wanted by La Liga clubs and top clubs in Russia? Dont we just love to downrate our local heroes!
    The story from Kick-Off reads:
    Chamanga attracts attention overseas05 February 2008
    Everything is going right for James Chamanga. The Moroka Swallows hitman has received invitations from Spain and Russia for trials after his exploits for his native Zambia at the MTN Africa Cup of Nations

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  2. “The clubs requested the player to come for trials,” said Bondarenko. “They are very interested in his services and although they watched him during the tournament, they want to have a closer look at him. But obviously we have to discuss the possibilities of him traveling to Europe with Moroka Swallows first

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  3. “One has to leave with criticism and get the good from the bad and work very hard on your weakness because life is like that’

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  4. you seem to be a humble brother…HOPE YOU STAY FOCUSED AND CONTINUE HARD WORKING AND ALLAH WILL BE THERE FOR YOU.

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  5. BROTHER HIMOONDE, I LIKE YOUR ATTITUDE AND STYLE OF PLAY. GET SOME ADVICE FROM GREAT PLAYERS LIKE BYALYA.

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  6. Soccer fan No2, we can’t get too excited, just like when Mbesuma went to Portsmouth. There are allot things that can go wrong for the young ambitious african footballers. The best/only thing you can do is have the right attitude and hope that things will go well. Both Mayuka & HH seemed very bright. Good luck to them. Chamanga, keep your head up!

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  7. I mean keep your head up literally as you keep your head down and work hard. HOT PROPERTY! You need to prove yourself at the higher levels. That’s what HH was talkin about here… It’s down to hardwork and learning, it’s not impossible.

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  8. Mwaice Himoonde all the best. Akantu fye, avoid ba Tasinta, ifyamba and chibuku. The sky is the limit.

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  9. Hachani Himoonde was a rookie at Africa Cup of Nations. The pace of the games were fast and the quality of the teams were better. It’s a good thing he learned something while playing for Zambia. Now with the exprience that he obtained and gain its up to him to take it, to the different level. HH God bless you from your head and to your toes. Stay humble and watch out with the people you associate with, make better decisions about your football career.

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  10. It is wrong to make public accusations based on rumor and inuendo. These young men sacrifice a lot to get the honor to represent their beloved Zambia.It is also my understanding that these boys are subjected to drug tests at many levels, otherwise they would not be allowed to compete.So when you are making wild accusations as you like to do Abdulaziz, show evidence. Yes, they may need to slow down on women, but dont feel jelous just because you cant get it up!

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  11. true these guys are hard working. all am saying is zambian men have a problem when it comes to making priorities more especially when it concerns the above mentioned. i live with zambians so i know what am talking about.

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  12. a good example is felix katongo in south africa/ coolins mwesuma in europe/ another local felix sunzu its along list brother. we in zambia know very well

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  13. iwe walid stop contaminating the blog? which part of eastern province are you from? petauke or box 1 kanele? who are you to judge the zambian men about priorities? our players simply lack discipline? you know what a bit of money and fame is capable of doing to unexprienced mind? the africa cup, yet again will mark an end to some careers? with the $2500 purse money…all hell will break loose? baniwone baniwone…anagwela utubwa?

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  14. Good luck to Mayuka as he prepares to go for trials in Europe. But I think we should just hope that he clinches a deal. Many are the times when Zambian players have gone abroad for trials only to fail and come back home. I hope this does not happen to Mayuka. And so is the same with Chamanga. But I think Chamanga with his experience, a move overseas is emminent.

    Obama can win the democratic presidential race, but US presidency eish, thats a big one. You know these white people cant let a black man enter white house as the name suggest, WHITE HOUSE. Maybe this is the time. We are yet to see.

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  15. abdulaziz how I pity you. I strongly believe that you are a disgruntled, lunatic, poor, sad, malicious and racist individual who surely needs help. Do not even call us Zambians your brothers. We are not your brothers. I bet you need to see the psychologist to examine your brain. You are criticising us. Do you have an economy where you come from in Somalia. By the way there is literally nothing there. No sport, no nothing. All there is are hundreds of rebels groups fighting and killing innocent people. I wouldnt be surprised if you are one of those rebels who is wanted for genocide in your country.

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  16. So Hichani Himoonde is from Kabwata. So I am born and raised in Dallas!!! Pity they are turning parks into bars. Abdulaziz walid has a point when he says too much booze in Z. Anyway, I hope our boys move to good clubs and we get a good coach, a good FAZ. We have the talent-U20 went to Canada, U-23 almost made to China. The future is bright.

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  17. The boy has the height, calibre to turn into a world class defender, thoughnI think, he ca do better as a holding midifielder..his ball skills are ver good…KamAmba and him can make us solid

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  18. i wish himonde luck. iwe abdulaziz have u heard that 20 people have been killed in ur home land, oh! i forgot for u chaps killing 20 people is an everyday thing. so iwe chiputi, worry about ur stupid mogadishu warlords cuz they are killing your family.

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  19. Ba Lula, bushe chiAbdulaziz kumwabo takwaba amaplayers to talk about? I think the best way to handle such an ***** is to stop responding to his rubbish talk.

    He is being kept alive because we keep responding to him. Chilekeni fye!

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  20. “What you resist, persists”. Learn the truth behind the statement; you will save yourself from temper tantrums!!!

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  21. Guys i personally agree with Don #27,lets ignore this guy.On the semifinals i think Ivory Coast is going all the way to the final the have so much depth in their team.If guys like B.Sanogo and Bakary Kone can’t make the first 11 eish,this team can compete with any one in the World pound for pound.Ghana/Cameroon can go either way.

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  22. I agree it is wise to ignore Abdulaziz ‘bin laden’ Walid. He is not in our class as Zambians.
    I see Ghana vs Cote D’Voire in the final. Whatever happens then, I dont know. Ghana seems to be playing good football. I have been following them carefully. I wouldnt mid putting my money on them.

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  23. Final, I hope it will be Ghana Vs I Coast, which any of the teams can win. But today Ghana Vs Cameroun, I think it is 50/50. But I think IC will beat Egpty.

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  24. THANK YOU MY BROTHERS FOR ENTRERTAINING ME. ZAMBIANS ARE PROUD PEOPLE BUT BE CAREFUL IN CHOOSING PRIORITIES women, beer or career. I HAVE NOW RETIRED FROM THIS BLOG SEE YOU IN 2010 WHERE SUDAN WILL BE AFCON CHAMPIONS AND ZAMBIA WILL FAIL TO QUALIFY TO THE FINALS. ALLAH BE WITH U ALL. IF I BLOG HERE AGAIN IAM A FOOL MOSLEM.

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  25. My magic worked, you all owe me for saving your HBP from that terror.

    Now, of course its not going to Ivory Coast & Ghana. Yes they are playing good football but at this point of the tournament cant afford to play down the threat from the Egyptians, and they are playing some good football. On the other hand Ghana has not been convincing in their games, save for the one against Nigeria which was because the game was taken to them. I hope they put their striking force in order, Jnr Agogo is not the most creative of finishers. He looks more like a dancer to me.

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  26. fc braga in portugal have given kalaba an offer but he awaits his club and another advisor before deciding on whether to take the offer of not according to daily mail.what does the block think about this?

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  27. Bye bye Abdulaziz walid!!!
    I hope to read from you again, except that time you will come with two additional names. Your full name will thus read: “FOOL MOSLEM ABDULAZIZ WALID”

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  28. My predictions are:
    1. Ivory Coast
    2. Cameroun
    3. Ghana
    4. Egypt
    In this order, the 2008 AFCON will finish…..

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  29. Iwe Chi.ka.la kabudula yaka shishi ulepenena kumpili ukokwine iwe chi sucide bomber.ifi ma.fi mumala koswe

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  30. We can see how foolish some people are, just when we thought we have gotten rid of our problem in Abdulaziz another fool comes spraying vulger speach. I get the feeling even the Abdulaziz was just one of us diguising their foolishness.

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  31. We can see how foolish some people are, just when we thought we have gotten rid of our problem in Abdulaziz another fool comes spraying vulger speach. I get the feeling even the Abdulaziz was just one of us diguising their foolishness. Poor Zambians!

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  32. Morocco sack French coach Michel
    Thu 7 Feb 2008, 15:36 GMT

    [-] Text [+] RABAT (Reuters) – Morocco, knocked out in the first round of the African Nations Cup, fired French coach Henri Michel on Thursday.

    “Henri Michel was sacked for several reasons including the bad performance of the team in the Nations Cup,” said Mohamed Ozal, deputy chairman of the country’s Royal Football Federation.

    Ozal said Jamel Fethi would replace Michel in a caretaker role until a full-time coach was hired.

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  33. Who are “professionals”?
    What does it mean to play professional football.
    Is Kalaba for example(who gets paid by playing for Zesco FC) not a professional footballer?
    Someone educate me

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  34. Please leave my brother ABDUL AZIZ, I have been assigned to carry out a Jihad on him and I will sort him out !!

    INGREDIENTS

    1. 20 Kg Compound D Fertiliser
    2. 500 Marbles
    3. 5 Kg Explosives from Kafironda

    Ndila mu sortinga ooyu mu Arab mu bululu wangu !!

    Hichaani, I am also half Tonga Bull like Obama my brother. We will back you all the way !!!

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  35. Good riddance you bigot too afraid to go fight your own wars in bora bora mountains where you have been dismembering each other for generations. Please dont come back!

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  36. Good riddance you bigot too afraid to go fight your own wars in bora bora mountains where you have been dismembering each other for generations. Please dont come back!Chokapo pano K’abudula!

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  37. I do not understand why Patrick phiri can not openly resign. He got it wrong at the ACFN. it is trypical of some Zambians especially politicians who feel resigning after a failure is a sign of weakness. Players will always be blamed but what do you say about who can not stand on the side line to give instructions and encouragement to his players when they are down. Managers like Arsene Wenger even kneel near the pitch to make sure that he is closely montitoring what is going and give correct instructions when his team is down.

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  38. In most countries, when an organization or branch thereof, experiences catastrophic failure accountability becomes a top priority and a checkdown is conducted from top to bottom. Thus it is not uncommon for someone such as the minister incharge of sports, the top FAZ administrators and coaching staff to resign or be replaced so that a fresh perspective may come into play. Without such introspection taking place we shall remain the dog chasing its tail.

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  39. Do you guys think we can draw any consolation from the fact that both Zambia’s opponents in group C may meet in the final?
    Oh how Zambia will rue the defensive errors…looking back on the matches, the Zambian attack is definitely giving other teams will worry about. Lets hit the ground running for the qualifiers.

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  40. 44. Born Rich. Good point you have raised. Is the Zambian top flight still amateur football? Well if it is, it’s very high standard for amateur football. Guys honestly, I’ve watched many PSL games at the stadium, and equally many Super Division games at home. Despite limited resources Zambian football is good football. Looking forward to seeing Trade Fair Grounds this season thanks to Supersport

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  41. I think Egypt will defend their title. Cameroon really didn’t deserve to beat Ghana, and they won’t be able to contain Egypt in the final.

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  42. Adbulaziz is a fool, he declared himself so, according to [32]. He is not even a muslim, no muslim calls himself a ‘moslem’; I stopped watching AFCON after Zambia lost, I will only watch the finals. Goodnight, fellow bloggers, may the God Lord bless y’all; may pretenders like Abdulaziz rot in hell; may his neighbour’s car alarm go off at 2 am while his neighbour is away on vacation in Livingstone!I am normally civil, but this guy gets on my nerves sometimes!

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  43. analyt my brother, there is nothing wrong in expressing yourself. AM JUST VERY HAPPY THAT THE PHARAOHS HAVE DONE IT AGAIN. ITS UNBELIEVABLE WOW WOW WOW. AM NOT INSULTING ANYONE HERE

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  44. Abdulaziz chi.ka.la chawiso. What did you tell us? So you are a fool. I wish we can see you in person t.o.m.ba no.ko. Your father’s c.o.c.k. we t.o.l.e. I know you c.a.m.el., I will sort you out.

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  45. So Zambia should be commended for ammassing 4 points from our group. Two teams from Zambia’s group are in the finals. Egypt vs Cameroun.

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  46. Citizen 1, I agree with you, it shows we were in the tougest group, we did not do that bad if the two teams from our group are in the finals. Egypt will beat Cameroun, I think they have good tactics.

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  47. Hey i didn’t think Egypt would beat Drogba and his men but,hey football is full of Surprises.Nice counter attacking football from the Pharaohs the guys are tactical & highly technical.I agree with the guys this goes to show that our group was tough.
    With 10 mins to go and Ivory Coast trailing 3-1 i switched off & retired for da night.
    Our team is good it’s just that we lack consistence.We can hold Egypt today and lose to Chad the following week.This speaks volumes about our Technical bench.Other teams teams that lost by 4 or 5 goals like Guinea,Benin,Ivory Coast & Namibia were beaten clean & out played but Zed we just gifted Cameroon with goals.We were never out played.

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  48. SO ZED WAS IN A WILD GROUP CUZ ALL THE TEAMS ARE IN THE FINAL.BUT CAMEROON WILL WIN, THEY CAN’T BE BEATEN TWICE.

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  49. You cant judge yourself based on other people’s performances. Zambia should/will only be ranked according to their performace, and not because Cameroon and Egypt are the last two(2).

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  50. I agree with Don #68. We should not console ourselves becoz the 2 teams from our group are in the final. FIFA will rank Zambia based on its performance.

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  51. YOU MAY BE A TALIBAN IF……….

    1. You refine heroin for a living, but you have a moral objection to beer.

    2. You own a $3,000 machine gun and $5,000 rocket launcher, but you can’t afford shoes.

    3. You have more wives than teeth.

    4. You wipe your butt with your bare left hand, but consider bacon “unclean.”

    5. You think vests come in two styles: bullet-proof and suicide.

    6. You can’t think of anyone you HAVEN’T declared Jihad against.

    7. You consider television dangerous, but routinely carry explosives in your clothing.

    8. You were amazed to discover that cell phones have uses other than setting off roadside bombs.

    9. You’ve ever uttered the phrase, “I love what y

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  52. 9. You’ve ever uttered the phrase, “I love what you’ve done with your cave.”

    10. You have nothing against women and think every man should own at least one.

    11. You bathe at least monthly whether necessary or not.

    12. You’ve ever had a crush on your neighbour’s goat.

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  53. Who is talking about ranks here? You must be mistaken. We are saying that Zambia performed well getting 4 points from a group with two of the teams in the finals. PERIOD. Mwaamba shani ukusendapo ichushi futi? Fu.ck the rankings

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  54. an obvious c&P which i do not subscribe to!! however it was quite a good and funny read but likely to upset certain quarters like our own Abdul !!!

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  55. #70 Humorous! # 72 is right,all people are saying is that our Group was Tough(Group of Death)to have two teams in the final.The other two semi finalists were from two different Groups.Even a layman in the game wouldn’t think you can be rated because of other teams.
    Though we agree didn’t go through the Knock stage and our team has a lot of work to do to be rated the best 4 in Africa.Our performance was bad chapwa.

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  56. Ba CITIZEN mulichipuba! We where airing our point of view on a good tone but you respond with the kind of language I associate with *****s. If we irritate your empty mind with our postings, please ignore us and respond to only those who agree with you. I wonder what kind of conversation that would be where all agree to what everyone says. Wikabwekeshapo makaka!!!

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  57. #78+79,lets be civil and avoid such language.If everytime we differ and we resort to such expletives imagine what the world would be like !! let those that read these pages feel that they are contributed to by decent people.

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  58. We can take some confidence from that and the two big games we played. In both games we we showed we could hold our own at times, the 2nd half against Cam we kept possession, we held Egypt very well going for win despite our lack confidence at the back. In both games you could see how frustrated Cam was when they couldn’t get the ball, and also Egypt when after the game you could see the coach consoling his upset players because they must have been upset they could not get the better of us. We can take confidence for we showed great flare, but…

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  59. the fact remains, we can’t be complacent, we still need to be playing solid technical football. If we can steady ourselfs well and inject composure, discipline, tactics, psychology, preparation, training, all these things that make solid football teams, the glory is there the taking.

    Egypt was a complete underdog, they struggled to qualify, everyone said they are aging, but actually they are 4 times better than they were 2 yrs ago. Something needs to said for experience aswell, Zaky , Al Hedari, R.Song. Those guys showed the value of that against superstars.

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  60. #82,what is it the team was doing in Spain….rumour has it they were thinking “…..If we can steady ourselfs well and inject composure, discipline, tactics, psychology, preparation, training, all these things that make solid football teams,”

    All teams endeavour to do this….our problem is the quality of players and coaching staff available!!

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  61. Don’t give this guy the satisfaction, Don’t let words upset you guys.
    Let him speak all he wants, do be distracted, say what you want to say about the topics at hand. We have a Chipolopolo forum that works here.

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  62. The Original Pundit! Ok, i must say Faz was clearly making an effort with the preps this time round, they did a reasonable job. We played that Andalusian side and lost 4-1, but it was nothing to be ashamed of, those Spain regions are like countries in themselves and they play with allot of pride and experience, our boys were in foreign land, cold, first game, don’t know who they are, there was no shame in it. Anyway, to what you say. For one I don’t think coaching staff have been good enough. An issue is consistency in choice of players, it has varied so much through qualifying. We need a pool of players, but we need people playing the same roll game in game out.

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  63. I agree with you, Original Pundit, I think we need a coaching staff that is going to unite all the players we have, all the young guys with the Katongo’s with Tana (who i feel still has a role to play), Someone has to be able to get the maximum out these guys. We must have this pool of players and stick with them. FAZ has to be able to get them back consistently from Europe, have them training together regularly.

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  64. So, i hope there is coach out there who has noticed our potential, one who can create a real competitive team here in Zambia. I don’t see it coming from inside the country, it must come from outside and outside of Africa even. Ultimately someone who can ad dimension and depth to the national team. I love the way we play and i wouldn’t trade it for anything, but more dimension is key if we are looking to compete at the very top, it was painfully lacking in AFCON08. Organization, management, preps, that is the bare minimum of what we expect from the football association. That Pfister guy said he would paralyze Ghana, he wasn’t joking.

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  65. The problem we have with Local coaches is that they can not decide on there own , but get easily carried away by fans and appointing authorities.They should learn from the Angolan coach who is able tell off his employers because they are only administrators and soccer strategists.

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  66. lets not make owerselves content in the fact that the teams in ower group are all in the final and say we did well,from zed we went with mission to win and not compare owerselves with anybody.
    class coaches we saw and now available and they have pedigre with loads of african experience.faz should just head hunt cause clearly a 2 years still searching and picking the wrong ones.skill there but no technical knowhow.

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  67. we have talented players but again,at times player selection fails us and that comes down to the coaching staff and technical bench.
    if one observed the zambia egypt game closely, you could see that our hitman chris katongo was not being fed adequately with godd balls by the mid fielders and wingers.the isaac chansa -rainford kalaba substitution brought life into the game and we saw that chris received a gud ball which he converted into a goal.however it was too late to see more of that action coz the game was in its dying minutes.so all in all,if kalaba had been given more time,we could even have won that game.so,we have the players just poor selection and of course they need more exposure.

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  68. How good is Rainford Kalaba. I have not heard many contributions about him on this blog. I thought he was one of the better players in the game against Sudan. His contributions were also positive against Egypt. His corner found a wide open Hachilensa (which he fluffed) and it was his pass that found a well position Chris Katongo against Egypt. Any reason why he did not feature against Cameroun? I know about his displinary record last season, but that aside, is he part of the future?

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  69. # 94
    the reason he did not feature against cameroon was because the technical bench thought isacc chansa was more experienced and therefore would play better.for chris katongo, he definately needed to start that game cause hiz our hit man,but if the bench had seen how well kalaba had played against sudan,they should have let him start the game and if he fulffed,the wud have replaced him with chansa.bt am sure the technical bench thot that since we were up against a very experienced cameronian side,they need xperienced players,but still,kalaba is good and needed more time and indeed,he should have featured in the cameroon game too.

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  70. #94
    mdala in a football team, each of the 11 players has a role to play and if they are not doing well,the whole team suffers.our loss to cameroon ,we all know how the defence fluffed but look at the determination at our upfront players like the katongo brothers mulenga etc, they played well.but of course our skipper did not receive a good number of balls from the mid field and wings and so it just could work.am sure it was clear that the spirit of the players was dumpened as soon as we were 2-0 down with those defensive mistakes.but trully we were a good team.so kalaba umwaiche mukali he needs to have the confidence of the coach to start matches.ucan see the skill when hiz on the ball.

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  71. abena billy mwanza ehh,ninshi guys, mwaletina etto ? cause mwalitusebanya balumendo.egypt are now champions but at least they failed to beat us.bwe had the ability to beat egypt if we had the right combination.one important factor in a good player is how calm and intelligent they are when they have the ball,kalaba has the calmness and intelligence and that makes him a good player.of course he fluffed b4 when he missed a decisive penalty but thats football.remember the days of roberto bagio,he fluffed at the world cup and missed a decisive penalty and so filachitika.so all in all, the team should be maintained.the coach is the one that needs training on how 2 select the best starting 11.

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  72. I like your analysis and mannner of speaking, thank you for this interesting ticcket, it s always nice to visit this beautiful blog 🙂

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