Sun, 12 Mar 2017 09:25:08 +0000


By Michael Miyoba


THE 14th edition of the Under-20 Africa cup on Nations will today come to a close when the Beston Chambeshi-mentored Junior Chipolopolo boys take on their Senegalese counterparts in the final to be played at the National Heroes stadium in Lusaka.

The two-yearly  international youth soccer tournament organized by the Confederation of African Football (CAF) for players aged 20 and below has witnessed some stunning soccer skills showcased by the young talented upcoming super stars from the eight nations that participated at this year’s event.

Host nation and eventual finalist Zambia who boast of having the best team at this year’s tournament take on the Teranga lions of Senegal who are alleged to be practicing black magic after a video went viral on social media depicting Senegalese players exchanging what was suspected to be black magic during their semifinal clash against Guinea.

A total of 45 goals have been scored so far with the junior Chipolopolo possessing the deadliest striking force of Zanaco’s Fashion Sakala, Mpande Youth’s Edward Chilufya and Patson Daka who plays for Liefering F.C of Austria.

The trio have scored a total of nine goals between them with Chilufya’s loan semifinal goal against South Africa sending the Chambeshi lads into today’s final.

Zambia has scored a total of eleven goals and own the best defensive record at the tournament having allowed only two goals from the four games played.

And despite having the best team at the tournament, Zambia under 20 national team Chambeshi said the junior Chipolopolo will not underrate Senegal when the two teams clash in today’s final.

Chambeshi said that his boys were focused on winning the under 20 AfCON title which has eluded Zambia since its inception.

He noted that the Senegalese team was a great side having qualified to the tournament’s final without a loss.

“I am happy with the performance of my boys as they are able to withstand any pressure and come from behind to win a game,” Chambeshi said

Meanwhile the Teranga Lions of Senegal reached the final of the U-20 Africa Cup of Nations for the second time running thanks to a hard fought 1-0 win over Guinea in their semi-final clash on Thursday at Ndola’s Levy Mwanawasa Stadium.

A header from Striker Aliou Badji’s was all ‘Les Lionceaux’ required to set up a date with tournaments host Zambia in todays final at National Heroes Stadium.

And despite facing one of the best teams in today’s final, Senegalese head coach Joseph Koto believes his boys have what it takes to beat the junior Chipolopolo boys.

Koto noted that his team is not under any pressure as they are used to playing such matches.

“We are not under any pressure going into the final match. We are used to playing such games and we recognize that Zambia is great team but we are ready for the final,

Meanwhile after being denied the chance to play in the tournament’s final by host nation Zambia, the Amajita will take on Guinea in the third and fourth fixture which will be a curtain raiser for today’s final to be played at the National Heroes Stadium.

The winner of the third and fourth fixture will scoop the tournaments bronze medal.


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