A disappointed captain of Zambia’s Chipolopolo, Ranford Kalaba has attributed the respect they had for Nigeria’s Super Eagles as their undoing in the first round of the 2018 World Cup Qualifiers.
The TP Mazembe striker told Soka25east.com admitted squandering several begging chances in the encounter. He added that Zambia respected Nigeria so much in the first half of the game and the belief came out positive especially in the second half.
“I want to apologize to the soccer fans and the entire nation because I missed a lot of chances and we had chances to score a number goals in the first half. Am disappointed but I think it is one thing that the Coach and I will look at as we prepare for the next encounters.”
He however said there was still a lot to play for in the group added that it was also time for the players in the Zambian national team to understand that there is a huge task going forward as we shall still face start studded teams with players that play in European leagues in the other teams that Zambia is yet to play.
Kalaba sentiments were backed by the Zambian trainer Wedson Nyirenda who said the team has to have self-belief in themselves and change the mentality of as we approach the later stages of the qualifying round. “We still have very big chances to qualify and this group, a team can qualify with 10 points and that is what Zambia will be focusing on too,” said Nyirenda.
The Zambian tactician, however, refused to blame the players saying it was a learning and building phase and the lapses seen in the game against Nigeria would be rectified in looking back to this game. Even when he agreed that the two goals Zambia conceded were silly mistakes, he is adamant that the players need to be given chance to still prove themselves.
In another Group B encounter, Cameroun held Algeria in Algiers to one all group, a result that Zambia would welcome knowing the group is still open and its starts with only one team getting the three points. Nigeria lead the group with three points while Algeria and Cameroun are on one point respectively while Zambia is fourth without a point.
The second round of games kicks off on the 7th of November 2016.
Source : ThenationonlineThenationonline