By MICHAEL MIYOBA
THE Zambia national futsal team will regroup next month to step up preparations for the 2024 TotalEnergies CAF Futsal Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers, national futsal team coach Andrea Cristoforetti has confirmed.
Zambia will meet Mozambique in the 2024 TotalEnergies CAF Futsal Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers which have attracted 10 nations that will battle it out for a place in next year’s finals.
According to the official draws conducted last Saturday at the CAF headquarters in Cairo, Egypt, Zambia will be away to Mozambique for the first leg of the qualifiers which will be played between February 02 – 04 while the return leg will be between February 9 – 11.
Cristoforetti, who described the draws as fair said Zambia was looking forward to meet Mozambique who are not pushovers.
“We definitely got the strongest team. Tanzania and Namibia are the two new comers so they need some games to play but they are probably the weakest teams,” Cristoforetti said.
“Mozambique is a team with experience. They have been around for some time and they have a futsal coach who has been with the team for many years, they played at the World Cup and four months ago they played the Intercontinental Cup in Thailand so they have been playing games with European teams.
They have been around and they can compete, they are a competitive team and it is definitely going to be difficult,” the gaffer said.
Cristoforetti said the team would regroup on January 4 to intensify preparations for the AFCON qualifiers.
He said starting the qualifiers with an away fixture will give Zambia a slight advantage over Mozambique.
“We are well prepared to play Mozambique we are looking forward to play and we know that if we want to go forward we need to play such kind of games so we are excited, and the guys have been saying that they are excited to do the last three weeks of preparations which will start from January 4,” Cristoforetti said.
The winners of the two-legged fixture will join Current champions, Morocco, Egypt and Angola who earned automatic qualification for the 2024 futsal AFCON as the best ranked teams in Africa.