Zambia Under -23 Beston Chambeshi says they need to be thorough and efficient this Sunday against Malawi in their second round, final leg 2019 U23 AFCON qualifier at National Heroes Stadium in Lusaka.
Zambia enjoy a 1-0 first leg away win over Malawi collected on March 20 and need a draw on March 24 to advance to the final qualifying round in June.
“It will be a tough but my boys are ready. Playing at home is a plus. We have everything to lose if we fail to beat Malawi,” Chambeshi said.
But Chambeshi well aware the kind of burden placed on his team that comes after the senior sides’ failure to qualify to the 2019 AFCON in Egypt.
The match will also test the 2017 U20 AFCON champions’ character in a qualifier in their first home reunion since lifting that title at the same venue as hosts in 2017.
A lot is expected especially from strikers Patson Daka and Fashion Sakala including midfielder Enock Mwepu who have who have made an immediate impact since graduating to the Chipolopolo setup from the Under-20 team.
Meanwhile, Malawi coach Meck Mwase has warned Zambia that they were fortunate to get an away win in Blantyre that handed his side its first loss in the qualifiers.
Unlike Zambia who enjoyed a preliminary round bye, Malawi kicked off their race with a 2-1 away win over Botswana on November 17 but drew 1-1 at home in Blantyre on November 20.
“Sometimes when we are playing at home there is a lot of pleasure from the supporters they always want to win but when we travel there is nothing like that and we are comfortable,” Mwase said.
Winner over both legs will play Burundi or Congo-Brazzaville in June who finished 0-0 in Bujumbura on March 20 heading into the final leg on March 26 in Brazzaville.
Victor of that June’s contest will qualify to the Egypt tournament this November where the top three finishers will represent Africa at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics football tournament.