Simataa backs FAZ on players’ rest

FOOTBALL administrator Simataa Simataa has backed the decision by FAZ to defer the Chipolopolo camping to after Christmas, saying a break for the players is inevitable as they need to relax and get back the mental energies before the Rwanda 2016 African Nations Championship (CHAN) next month.

Simataa told the Daily Nation yesterday that there was nothing wrong with the players being given a break if the technical bench assessed that the immediate camping would be too much on them.

He said the mental state of a player was vital ahead of a big tournament such as CHAN.

“Personally there is nothing wrong with the team going on a break. I know there are issues of the short period left for the team to prepare. But what we should not forget is that these players need to be mentally ready for the tournament.

“A stressed player cannot produce good results, hence the importance of the rest. But the players need to stay focussed to maintain fitness. They should bear in mind that there is a tournament and need to bring the title,” he said.

However, Simataa expressed sadness with the continued use of the same players at all levels, including those that have failed to perform.

He said FAZ has created a picture that Zambia was limited in terms of talent simply for  mischievous intentions.

“It’s surprising that although the CHAN tournament has no limit, the same players at Under-23 have been recalled. Some failed to perform but yet are on the team list. I feel we have good local players and no need to use the same ones.

“What is FAZ’s intention?  There is no way we can use a player who is under-performing for the entire year. Let them give chance to others,” he said. And Chipolopolo Fans Association president Yotham Mwanza said hoped the break will not be the reason for the players to under-perform in Rwanda.

“The break is okay but we hope it’s strategic. We trust the decision by the coach but it should yield positive results. We are behind the team till the CHAN finals,” he said.