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…as Chipolopolo coach unveils 24-man squad for World Cup qualifiers 


THE Red Arrows duo of goal keeper Charles Kalumba and Striker Ricky Banda have traveled to Morocco with the Chipolopolo after making the final 24-member squad for the crucial back-to-back 2026 FIFA World Cup qualifiers against Morocco and Tanzania.

Kalumba who played a key role as Red Arrows scooped the ABSA Cup and the Super League was initially dropped before he was called back to replace Green Buffaloes shot stopper Francis Mwansa who had made the final squad but couldn’t travel due to a travel documentation hitch.

Kalumba will act as third choice to Power Dynamos goal keeper Lawrence Mulenga and Zesco’s Toaster Nsabata.

Grant has also named midfielder Benson Sakala, Sweden based Edward Chilufya and Young African’s Kennedy Musonda in the squad led by experienced Stopila Sunzu and Leicester City striker Patson Daka.

Italian based Serie A striker Kingston Mutandwa, Miguel Chaiwa and former TP Mazembe defender Kabaso Chongo have also made the cut after impressing Grant during their one-week camp in Lusaka.

“I’m very happy with training. The players did very well and showed better understanding of the tactics that we want to play and the atmosphere was good. I’m really happy with the performance of the players so far especially their efforts,” Grant said before the team departed for Agadir, Morocco.

Grant said that the Chipolopolo boys would fight hard to make the nation proud as they face Morocco and Tanzania. 

“We will do all the best to represent Zambia. Since I came here I said that we need to think about the fans all the time because they are the most important in this and we need to do everything possible to please them. 

“We are positive and we want the people to be happy. It is a long way to the World Cup. The group is very tough but I promise that we will do our best,” Grant said.

Meanwhile, Power Dynamos speedy winger, Joshua Mutale, Abraham Siankombo, defender Luka Banda, and goal keeper Victor Chabu have been dropped by coach Avram Grant. 

The Chipolopolo will play Morocco on June 7th in Agadir before concluding the back to back fixtures with a home game against Tanzania on June 11 at Levy Mwanawasa Stadium in Ndola.


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