Zambia’s group F opener against D.R Congo last evening has drawn criticism from some local soccer fans.
A soccer fan of Matero, Mwaba Mbonsheye says it was disappointing to see Zambia being outplayed by D.R Congo in all fronts.
Mbonsheye says except for defender Stoppila Sunzu who put in his level best in the game, the rest of the players were mere passengers.
“ Vamene bana chaya game mailo sivinanisekeseko nangu pangono.” (The way Chipolopolo played last evening was not pleasing at all),” he said.
However, Chibulu Musonda, a soccer analyst said while Chipolopolo played poorly, let the country take a point and build on it.
Musonda, on his Face Book page says just one match, others already criticising the performance of the lads.
He also says the country should not forget that Grant qualified, “us to the Africa Cup after failing not once but three times.”
“In case some have forgotten this is the highest level in national team football on the continent with some of the best players on earth. “Am sure you all see what Yoane Wissa ( DR. Congo lead Striker) does for Brentford in the English Premier League week in and out.
Musonda reasoned that the Chipolopolo lacked real quality on the ball.
But, another Lusaka based soccer analyst Alfred Banda says the Grant tutored side should change their attitude to the game if they are to go beyond preliminaries.
Banda says the Chipolopolo would have lost last night’s group opener had it not been for experienced defender Sunzu who made notable clearances several times for Zambia last evening.
He advised the coach and the entire technical bench to ensure players should not only play for their personal stardom but for the country saying the AFCON finals requires seriousness and self-discipline on and off the pitch.
Banda says AFCON tournaments are not for personalities or popularities to win but teamwork and sacrifice.
He adds that the current Chipolopolo must learn from team work exhibited by the AFCON champions of 2012 who emerged winners against star studded sides like Egypt, Cameroon and Ivory Coast, then.
Banda adds that the poor display by the Chipolopolo in their first encounter at the AFCON 2024 should not be allowed to continue saying if they continue with the style of play like the one exhibited last evening, the national team will not go beyond the group stage.
In their group F opener, Zambia held D.R Congo one all while Morocco beat Tanzania 3-0 to lead the table.
In the next match on Sunday, Zambia will play against Tanzania, a game optimists say is a must win for the Chipolopolo to secure a place in the next round.