FOOTBALL Association of Zambia (FAZ) president Kalusha Bwalya has described the final draw of the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations conducted in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea, on Wednesday evening as “tough”.
Kalu, who is also CAF executive member, said the Chipolopolo Boys will have to prepare hard and adequately for AfCON.
“I knew that the draw would be tough. We have to prepare really hard and adequately,” he said.
Although the draws were tough, Kalu said he had confidence in Chipolopolo, adding that the team will be ready ahead of the finals.
Kalu has wished the national team good luck ahead of the AfCON which kicks off on January 17. Zambia plays her first match against DR Congo the following day.
Nkana head coach Beston Chambeshi said Group B in which Zambia has been placed is not an easy one.
“It is not an easy group because we have DR Congo whom we have not faced in a very long time. We faced Cape Verde in the qualifiers,” he said.
Chambeshi warned the Chipolopolo Boys to be careful with Tunisia, adding that it once won the AfCON.
He said the national team needed to prepare very well before going to Equitorial Guinea.
“We have the young players who have been included in the team that will be preparing for AfCON. We need to give them enough time to prepare,” he said.
Chambeshi called on head coach Honor Janza to give enough time to the young players whom he has included in the team to prepare adequately. Zambia has been drawn in Group B alongside Democratic Republic of Congo, Cape Verde and Tunisia.
Group B will be based in Ebebiyin where matches will be hosted at the 5,000 capacity Nuevo Estadio de Ebebiyin.
Zambia will play the group’s opening match gainst Democratic Republic of Congo on January 18 with the second match against Tunisia coming four days later. The final group phase match against Cape Verde will be played on January 26.
Hosts Equatorial Guinea will play the tournament’s opening match against Congo Brazzaville in Bata on January 17.
Both Tunisia (ranked 2nd in Africa) and Democratic Republic of Congo (ranked 12th in Africa) are previous winners of the tournament while Cape Verde (ranked 7th in Africa) who are making their second appearance qualified ahead of Zambia (ranked 15th in Africa) from Group F.