Zambia booked a final date in the 22nd edition of the COSAFA Cup after defeating and silencing their noise neighbours South Africa 2-1 in the semifinals played this evening in Durban.
Moses Sichone’s boys came from a goal down at the break to win thanks to goals from Green Buffaloes midfielder Golden Mashata five minutes after the break and Red Arrows striker Albert Kangwanda’s well-taken free kick in the 69th minute.
Zambia will take on Lesotho who are themselves looking to win the COSAFA Cup for the first time in their history. Lesotho defeated Malawi 3-0 in post-match penalties after the match was tied 1-1 after 90 minutes.
Expressing his satisfaction with the team’s performance, Zambia coach Moses Sichone praised the players, saying, “Compliment to the guys they have done very well from the first half we created a lot of chances, although South Africa managed to convert one of theirs.
“I told the boys at the break to just continue playing well because we were the better side. We planned well we saw how South Africa played in other games and used their weaknesses and we won. I’m happy my boys followed the instructions,” Sichone said
South Africa’s coach acknowledged the team’s lapse in concentration, which led to conceding the first goal, and expressed disappointment at not reaching the final. Reflecting on their performance, he stated, “I am proud of the team’s efforts throughout the tournament.
“Unfortunately, we couldn’t progress to the final. Our execution in the final third was lacking, resulting in a loss of possession. We needed more aggression to break down the opposition’s defense. Despite doing everything within our capabilities, victory eluded us,” he said.
Zambia’s captain, Kelvin Kapumbu, who was named the Man of the Match, attributed their success to their adherence to the coach’s instructions. He emphasized his commitment to executing the coach’s strategies, particularly in midfield play and maintaining effective link-up play.
The final will be played on Sunday, July 16, in Durban.