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GRANT HITS BACK

By MICHAEL MIYOBA

ZAMBIA national soccer team coach Avram Grant has described Fashion Sakala’s allegations as total lies.

Grant said he has never urged Fashion Sakala or any player to join his agent Nir Karin to have a high chance of being called to the national team.

Grant who has been accused of destroying Zambian football by Sakala said he has never faced the accusations leveled against him by Sakala in his 51 years of being coach.

Grant said he understands that Sakala is angry for not being called to the national team a decision made after the player disrespected him with a rude response after he was cautioned of his poor performance at the AFCON.

“I decided that from the two games that we are going to have, I need to keep the harmony of the team. I can’t allow the behavior of super stars, players who think they are not equal to others and allow myself to do things that are not professional.  I’m not a good coach, I was good before now I’m not and most importantly he (Sakala) accused me of things that nobody has accused me of I’m my over 50 years of coaching,” Grant said.

“Let me be clear to you about the truth and the facts. its false accusations, its completely lies. I never told Fashion Sakala or any other player in my history to sign with my agent and I have a very good friend as an agent,” Grant said.  “I never told any player to sign with my agent. Its completely lies. This is the fact this is the truth. In my 50 years of coaching it hasn’t changed here. I understand the player is angry and he doesn’t agree with my decisions sometimes even my players don’t agree with my decisions even my assistants don’t agree with my decision but this is my job to keep the harmony of the team and I think that’s one thing that we have done well,” Grant said.

He said no one is a super star and all players are equal when it comes to playing for the national team.

Grant who has summed a provisional 27-member Chipolopolo squad said Sakala still has the opportunity to return to the national team.

He said the El Feyha star is a still a good player but will have to show remorse to be considered for national team duty in the future.

“I don’t have any personal issues with anyone as long as they playing well. If Fashion Sakala will know that he made a mistake and follow the rules that I’m asking from the players, taking responsibility, no excuses no complaints, performing on the pitch and preserving the values of the national team, anything is possible,” Grant said.

Meanwhile Grant has confirmed that the Chipolopolo will not have their camp in Spain as it was planed due to visa glitches.

Grant said the Chipolopolo will regroup on June 1 and will be camped in Lusaka before heading to Morocco for the World Cup qualifier scheduled for June 7th.

After playing Morocco on June 7, the Chipolopolo will host Tanzania four day later at the levy Mwanawasa Stadium in Ndola.

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