Zambia is seeking a bright start to the 2019 Africa Cup qualifying campaign as they host Mozambique on Saturday in the opening Group K match at Levy Mwanawasa Stadium in Ndola.
Chipolopolo faces the Mambas in the 15h00 kickoff match with fresh memories of missing out on qualifying for the 2017 Africa Cup in Gabon.
Coach Wedson Nyirenda’s side boats of unbeaten record against Mozambique.
“We are hoping for a good start. As you know we didn’t go to AFCON last time so this is our chance to go to AFCON 2019,” Chipolopolo captain Rainford Kalaba said.
“This is a must win for us so that we can start the competition on a high note,” he said.
There are high expectations from fans as Zambia comes up against Mozambique owing to the Under-20 Team’s exploits at both the recent Africa Cup and the FIFA World Cup where the junior team reached quarter finals last week.
“Mozambique also wants to go to the AFCON so there are no easy games. We will respect them but this is our home ground we need to get maximum points,” Kalaba added.
Mozambique coach Abel Xavier says they are gunning to win the match.
“We are coming to compete. We don’t fear Zambia but we respect them,” Xavier told journalists.
“We know in the past Zambia has been a great opponent but we have to consider that the past is the past, and we are focused on the present,” he said.
Guinea-Bissau and Namibia,who also play on Saturday in Bissau, are the other Group K teams.