Zesco United have credited their 2018/2019 CAF Confederation Cup group stage qualification success to lessons picked up during their unsuccessful CAF Champions League run.
Zesco were relegated to the CAF Confederation Cup when TP Mazembe eliminated them from the pre-group stage of the CAF Champions League in December after a 1-0 away loss but drew 1-1 at home to bow out 2-1 on aggregate.
Prior to that, Zesco collected away and home wins over AS Sonidep of Niger whom they beat 2-1 in Niamey on November 27 and 3-0 during the final leg in Ndola on December 4.
Meanwhile on Saturday, the Zambian champions redeemed themselves from their luckless record against South African opponents in continental football when they beat Kaizer Chiefs to book their CAF Confederation Cup league round spot, 5-2 on aggregate.
“We are very excited about this win; it was not easy but congratulations to our boys. We knew Chiefs would come at us but our plan was to hit back on the counter and it worked for us,” assistant Zesco coach Alfred Lupiya said.
“You know, we are from the Champions League, it wasn’t easy there, and now we are in Confederation Cup. That is what has really helped us; our experience from the Champions League.”
Zesco now await Monday’s group stage draws to know their league stage opponents for the competition that starts on February 1.