Mon, 16 Jan 2017 07:42:11 +0000


By Grace Chaile-Lesoetsa

 IT IS  a tricky group but we will not allow Zambia or the other two opponents deter our second qualification to the Africa Cup of Nations in 2019 , Guinea Bissau head coach Baciro Cande has charged.

With his team forcing a 1-all draw on hosts Gabon in the opening match on Saturday at the on-going AfCON, Cande was confident Bissau will qualify for the Cameroon 2019 tournament although thrown in Group K with Zambia, Namibia and Mozambique in the qualifying race.

Cande said Bissau has proved to the continent that underrating them was at the opponents’ own peril.

He said Zambia was a strong side, therefore his team will not sleep over their past record to avoid any surprises from the former AfCON champions.

“We have been drawn against Southern African teams which calls for adequate preparation. Zambia is a strong opponent in the group but we are not intimidated. We played the 2012 champions in the 2017 AfCON qualifying race and we managed to conquer them.

‘‘Bissau is determined to make a second appearance at the continental showpiece in 2019, hence not even Zambia will stop us,’’ he said.

He said the team will use the 2017 AfCON to gain more experience and prepare for the 2019 qualifiers.

“I feel the team has improved since last year. We are here at the 2017 tournament and the lads will not leave the same,” Cande said.

Meanwhile, Zambia Sports Fans Association (ZSFA) patron Peter Makembo said fans were confident of Zambia’s qualification to the 2019 tournament.

Makembo warned the Chipolopolo against under-estimating any team to avoid shocks.

“I feel this is the most flexible group we have ever been drawn in. Zambia is far better than any of the opponents, and with the current technical bench, qualification isn’t far,’’ he said.

FAZ deputy general secretary Lombe Mbalashi said the soccer body was ready to meet the team’s preparatory demands just to see the team qualify.


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