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The 2012 Afcon takes place from January 21 to February 12, and will be co-hosted by Gabon and Equatorial Guinea.
Some teams will be experiencing their first participation at the competition, while others will be aiming to write their names in the record books as Africa's best when the final takes place at the Stade d'Angondje in Libreville on February 12.
Goal.com introduces you to the 16 teams that will be taking part in this highly-anticipated competition. Here we profile the Chipolopolo ofZambia.
||1974, 1978, 1982, 1986, 1990, 1992, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2002,
2006, 2008, 2010, 2012
||Runners-up: 1974 & 1994
|HOW THEY QUALIFIED FOR AFCON 2012
GROUP C WINNER
Zambia left qualification until the final round of matches and played out a goalless draw with Libya which saw them finish as group winners with 13 points. Chipolopolo had started their campaign well, thrashing Comoros 4-0 in Lusaka and they also gave Mozambique a 3-0 hiding which they followed up with a 2-0 win in the return fixture.
|HERVE RENARD | Coach
Renard has been reappointed as the new Chipolopolo coach, replacing the Italian trainer Dario Bonetti who was recently sacked despite guiding Zambia to a berth in the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations. The Frenchman was Zambia coach between May 2008 and February 2010 then quit his position for a lucrative deal with the Palancas Negras of Angola.
|CHRISTOPHER KATONGO | Captain
The 29-year-old striker is currently playing for Chinese club Henan Construction. He has played in Germany for Arminia Bielefeld as well as the South African PSL side Jomo Cosmos. He is famous for scoring a quick fire hat-trick against South Africa in 2007, which earned him a promotion from a corporal to a sergeant in the Zambian Army.
|KENNEDY MWEENE | Star Player
Mweene is one of the best goalkeepers in the South African PSL, where he plays for Free State Stars. The 2009-10 Premier Soccer League Goalkeeper of the Year is currently the captain of Stars and has also on several occasions skippered the national team. He is not just a safe pair of hands, but is also able to take penalties for his side.
|EMMANUEL MAYUKA | Young Talent
The 21-year-old striker was the youngest player at both the 2007 Under-20 World Cup and the Ghana 2008 Africa Cup of Nations. After the Afcon tournament he was snapped up by Israeli side Maccabi Tel Aviv and he now plays for Swiss side Young Boys, who signed him as replacement for Seydou Doumbia. He has an eye for goal and impressive athletic ability.
|PROBABLE STARTING XI
|The Chipolopolo have always been a quick attacking team making use of a big forward, in this case Jacob Mulenga, who holds the ball to bring his supporting partner, Chris Katongo, and midfielders into play. Their signature attacking move is playing the ball wide to Fwayo Tembo and Jonas Sakuwaha to cross for Mulenga who is very strong in the air.
Musonda, Sunzu, Chintu, N. Mulenga
Tembo, Chivuta, Kalaba, Sakuwaha
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