…Fashion Believes Chipolopolo can do wonders at AFCON
By MICHAEL MIYOBA
STRIKER Fashion Sakala says the Chipolopolo boys are not under pressure as they look forward to compete and do wonders at the ongoing 2023 TotalEnegies Africa Cup of Nations taking place in Ivory Coast.
Zambia will compete in Group F consisting of Tanazania, north African giants Morocco and rivals Congo DR who they will face in the first match scheduled for Wednesday night at Stade de San Pedro.
Sakala who plays for Saudi Pro league club Al-Fayha said the Chipolopolo who enjoyed an international Camp in Saudi Arabia where they faced Cameroon in a preparatory fixture were highly motivated to compete at the tournament in Ivory Coast.
He said the Saudi camp helped the team to prepare adequately for the AFCON because the players were able to gel.
Sakala said the Chipolopolo have a good squad consisting of young players who are determined to compete and make the country proud.
“I think we are in a very good group and if we stick together, if we show the passion, hard work and dedication, I think we are going to go through,” Sakala said.
“There are no easy games, we have tough countries in our group but I believe we can do it and the squad is very motivated. Everyone will give everything for us to go through to the next stage of the AFCON,” he said.
The former Under-20 star who won the youth AFCON in 2017 noted that the Chipolopolo were ready to face any team at the AFCON and anyone is capable of scoring goals which will be crucial for the team to reach the knockout stage.
He said the international friendly match played in Saudi Arabia against former Champions Cameroon gave the Chipolopolo an insight of how ready they are for the AFCON.
“We are ready for any team. There is no pressure and the good thing about our squad is that our attacking players are all dangerous.
“If defenders will concentrate on me Patson Daka will score, Lameck Banda will score Edward Chilufya will score. If the other players focus on Patson Daka, they leave space for me to hit them hard, Lameck will hit them hard so this is the good thing about our squad. We are all hungry to score and we have the midfielders Rally Bwalya, Emmanuel Banda, Klings Kangwa. we have this squad that can score through any player so there is no pressure,” Sakala said.
He encouraged Chipolopolo soccer fans to continue supporting the team like they did during the qualifiers to motivate the players to make the country proud.
After facing Congo DR on Wednesday night, the Chipolopolo will face the Taifa Stars of Tanzania four days later before concluding their AFCON group action with a match against Morocco on January 24th.