Football Association of Zambia (FAZ) president Andrew Kamanga is hopeful the national team is on the right trajectory and will soon be a strong force.
Zambia won the Africa Cup of Nations title in 2012 but since then they have not been a force unlike the junior teams and their women's team but the federation chief is confident they are on the right path again.
“We have no doubt that with the trajectory that the team is on, we will be able to rebound as a strong force on the African continent and beyond,” Kamanga said in a Facebook post.
Zambia are the only side that has managed to play more friendly matches and Kamanga has praised the team for doing so despite the coronavirus challenges.
“Chipolopolo have been busy during this window playing three international friendly matches,” he continued.
“Under the Covid-19 conditions, getting to play international games is not easy. Some of our colleagues in other countries have opted not to play any games during this window while others have had to take games to other continents where the Covid-19 trap is less cumbersome.
“It is a very tedious process to organize matches in this environment. Where opponents are available, there is always the challenge of getting the players to travel for these games and also negotiate the wearisome travel arrangements that have been worsened by the Covid-19 crisis.
“Despite all these hurdles, we were able to clinch three international friendlies with the Flames of Malawi whose regional solidarity we continue to count on, Kenya and South Africa.
“We were able to manoeuvre all the players with the coach needed for this assignment except for the two Red Bull Salzburg players [Patson Daka and Enock Mwepu] that were grounded by Covid-19 restrictions at their club. We are happy others made it with five from Europe and three from Caf leagues.”
Zambia are winless in their Afcon qualifiers after playing two matches and will also be participants in the Chan tournament early next year in Cameroon and Kamanga has hinted more friendlies could be in the pipeline.
“As we continue building for the November showdown with Botswana and Chan in January, we shall continue to support all our teams with as many friendly matches as possible,” the official concluded.
“We are happy that we were able to give the Chipolopolo good preparations for the Botswana matches and also the Chan. We particularly note the number of local players that were given a run in the games played during the Fifa window.”
Zambia won two of their friendlies, against Malawi and South Africa, but faltered against Harambee Stars.