Thursday, July 25, 2024

Zambia U23 Upbeat Ahead of Sierra Leone Clash


Coach Osward Mutapa is positive his Zambia U23 side will prevail in Saturday’s Morocco 2023 U23 AFCON second round final leg qualifier against Sierra Leone at National Heroes Stadium in Lusaka.

Zambia and Sierra Leone head into the penultimate qualifying round fixture locked at 1-1 from their first leg played on October 22 in Monrovia.

Both sides converted penalties with Alie Conteh slotting Sierra Leone ahead in the 58th minute.

Joshua Mutale converted an 88th minute penalty after Golden Mashata was fouled in the area.

“Football is about pressure and we are going into that game with the positive mind that we will definitely win,” Mutapa said.

“Getting a draw away from home was important so that we can come and finish the job here.

“It won’t be an easy game in that we need to fight to ensure we qualify for the next stage.

“But the boys are eager for the game but I like I have alluded to, it is not an easy game because equally, Sierra Leones are not a walkover they are here to fight but at the end of the day we have to come out with a victory.”

Zambia only has one injury absentee in right-back Brian Musema who limped off in the 59th minute of the first leg.

The winner on Saturday will face Egypt or Eswatini in the final round to be played next March.

Egypt and Eswatini are in action on Sunday in Alexandria battling with a 0-0 first leg deadlock.

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