Saturday, June 22, 2024

Sports Minister Laments 2021 AFCON Flop

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Sports Minister Emmanuel Mulenga is disappointed with Chipolopolo’s failure to qualify for the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON).

Zambia’s slim chances of qualifying for Cameroon 2021 ended on Thursday night following a 3-3 home draw against African champions Algeria in the penultimate Group H match in Lusaka.

This is the third straight time Zambia is missing out on AFCON qualification.

“I think as Sports Minister indeed I am concerned that we have not gone to the Africa Cup,” Mulenga said.

”We need to go back to the drawing board and what we are working up on as a ministry is to make sure we introduce the FAZ league in schools. From Grade one to Grade 12 the pupils should have a league. We are introducing leagues in schools.”

Mulenga said a poor start to the qualifying campaign costed Zambia a place at the Cameroon tournament.

“We need to look at the mistakes which were made, especially when we played Zimbabwe here at home and when we played Botswana away,” he said.

Zambia lost three of the first four matches in the qualifying campaign – going down 5-0 to Algeria, 2-1 to Zimbabwe and 1-0 to Botswana.

“If we didn’t lose those games I think we were going to be in a better position to qualify. So we should treat each game with the importance it deserves whether it is the first game or the second game. We should not only put our heads together when we reach almost at the far end and then we start saying if we win this then we have chances to qualify.”

Mulenga concluded: “Let’s win the first games, let’s make sure we win the first games so that the games which we will remain there after will be just for formality sake.”

Meanwhile, Zambia faces Zimbabwe in the last group match on Monday away in Harare in a formality encounter on the same day Algeria will be hosting Botswana in the north.

6 COMMENTS

  1. EMMANUEL MULENGA CANNOT BE LAMENTING ZAMBIA’S FAILURE TO QUALIFY FOR AFCON BECAUSE HE IS THE BIGGEST STAKE-HOLDER WHO DELAYED THE APPOINTMENT OF A NEW NATIONAL SOCCER TEAM COACH, AND WORSE STILL MICHO STAYED FOR SEVERAL AFTER HE WAS APPOINTED WITHOUT HIS CONTRACT BY BEING SIGNED BY MULENGA, FOR REASONS BEST KNOWN TO HIMSELF. SO IF MICHO HAD BEEN APPOINTED EARLIER, WE WOULD NOT BE TALKING ABOUT “SEMBE” AND “IF ZIMBABWE DRAW WITH BOTSWANA AND WE BEAT ALGERIA THEN . . . . . ! THE DAMAGE WAS ALREADY DONE BY NOT APPOINTING A NEW COACH BEFORE THE BEGINNING OF THE QUALIFIERS! THIS IS WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU ATTACH PERSONAL INTERESTS TO OFFICIAL MATTERS! BYE! BYE! POLIO! UNTIL 2023!

  2. We lost the first games because Micho stubbornness. Micho thought those small boys with no International experience will. Over the years Zambia has been replacing players gradually but Micho did not want anything to do with 2012 players. If you look at Ghana, Nigeria, Cameron they have a mixed team of experienced and new players. Players like Kalaba, Sunzu are useful even just be there to advise new players and train with the young ones.

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