Zambia Under-23 coach Fighton Simukonda has breathed a sigh of relief after two overseas call-ups reported ahead of this weekends must-win 2015 CAF Under-23 Cup qualifier against Cote d’Ivoire.
Striker Ronald Kampamba of Egyptian club Wadi Degla and Mamelodi Sundowns midfielder Mukuka Mulenga all reported for duty in Lusaka on Tuesday afternoon.
The duo arrived in camp 24 hours behind schedule citing logistical reasons.
However, Israeli-based defender Emmanuel Mbola will miss the final round, last leg decider after Hapoel Ra’anana declined to release him because the qualifier did not fall on a FIFA match date.
“Preparations have been going on well, Sate (Kampamba) is in, Mukuka is in, I think we are now okay because these are the guys we have been waiting for,” Simukonda said.
“We have to win because that was the first half.
“This is going to be the second half we have to win. We have to go flat out and score the goals.”
Kampamba and Mukuka are Zambia’s only foreign-based call-ups Simukonda will field for the qualifier to be played at Nkoloma Stadium in Lusaka.
The first leg on July 18 in Abidjan ended scoreless.
Winner this weekend will qualify for the 2015 tournament to be hosted by Senegal from be held from November 28 to December 12 in Senegal.
The top three finishers at the second edition of the CAF Under-23 Cup will qualify for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.