Zambia are the 2017 Under-20 AFCON champions after downing Senegal 2-0 in the final at National Heroes Stadium in Lusaka.
Beston ‘Quicksilver’ Chambeshi’s side lifted the title with a one hundred percent record after winning all their four games and are also unbeaten 11 successive official matches since the team was constituted last August.
Goals from Patson Daka and Edward Chilufya added the Under-20 title to Zambia’s honours roll after the senior teams 2012 Africa Cup triumph in Gabon.
Daka put Zambia ahead in the 17th minute after benefitting from some poor goalkeeping my Lamine Sarr who spilt the ball into the striker’s path and the striker ruthlessly finished it off with ice cold precession.
Sarr was again at fault for the second goal in the 33rd minute after some poor communication with his defender when he rushed out of his area.
The goal was credited to Chilufya although replays show Sarr and the defender nearest to him may have conceded an own-goal.
Shenanigans then manifested just before the hour mark when African football’s darkest side stole the spotlight briefly when Ibrahima Niane and his colleagues seemingly planted juju in the Zambia goal.
Referee Thierry Nkurunziza defused the situation and also booked Ibrahima Ndiaye for his role at the scene of the crime but Zambia were in cruise control heading into the last 30 minutes despite Senegal push for a comeback.
Meanwhile, Zambia now become the 4th host country to win the Under-20 title after Egypt in 1991, Morocco in 1997 and Ghana in 1999.
Chambeshi and his charges now take a month off before regrouping in April ahead of their trip to Suwon for the 2017 FIFA U20 world Cup that South Korea will host from May 20 to June 11.
The draws will be made on May 15.