We are a week away from the 2019/2020 FAZ League restart after a four-month Covid-19 lockdown and defending Super Division champions Zesco United have a word particularly for their Ndola archrivals Forest Rangers.
The league will resume with Forest sitting in unfamiliar territory leading the FAZ Super Division and five points ahead of Zesco with nine games left to play and also facing the strong prospect of debut continental qualification.
But Forest coach Tennant Chilumba a couple of months ago in the midst of the lockdown declared that an unprecedented fourth successive league title for Zesco was impossible and that history was in their grasp for a debut league crown.
“The only thing is that in all those nine games, we are meeting them again, so we’ll see,” Zesco CEO Richard Mulenga told The Mast.
“It could be a determining factor, last season Kabwe Warriors looked like they were going to win it until the very end.
“The truth of the matter is that until the last 90 minutes are played, you can’t take anything for granted.
“You can’t crown yourselves as champions, there are still nine games remaining.”
Interestingly, Chilumba was at the helm of Warriors’ spectacular stumble just before the finish line last season when Zesco shaved them by two points to clinch a final league title playoff spot from Pool A during the 2019 transitional season.
Chilumba joined Forest in mid-season last November, replacing Perry Mutapa who had left to take up the Power Dynamos job, when Warriors declined to extend his contract.
Zesco will visit Forest on August 26 just before the penultimate stage of the season in Week 32.
Meanwhile, the first leg Ndola derby didn’t end well for Zesco who lost 1-0 at home at Levy Mwanawasa Stadium that they ironically share with Forest.