Chipolopolo coach Sven Vandenbroek has unveiled a 26 member squad for the September 8 Africa Cup of Nations match against Namibia opening the door for all eligible Zambian players abroad performing for their clubs.
Vandenbroek has recalled former skipper Rainford Kalaba who stars for TP Mazembe alongside club mates Kabaso Chongo and Nathan Sinkala.
During a media briefing at Football House this morning, the Belgian also named long forgotten Armenia based Lubambo Musonda and Hapoel Ra’anana defender Emmanuel Mbola.
Vandenbroek has also made interesting calls in the local front with in-form Spencer Sautu and Bruce Musakanya roped in.
The coach has also taken a dig at the local media for their obsession with getting information through the backdoor when he has been available officially to provide the information.
“What happened in the past I cannot judge, there are rumours, people are telling me things, but I cannot judge so everyone starts from zero. Everyone opens the door for the national team, if they are all willing and eager to play for the national team. I said it already in the past, everyone is welcome when they are performing in their clubs,” he said.
Vandenbroek said that the Namibia encounter was a must win match for the Chipolopolo if they are to have a chance of qualifying to the Cameroon 2019 Africa Cup of Nations.
“I think it is a very important game for both of us. It is a must win for both. We are both at zero points, so if we want to have a chance to qualify, we both have to win,” he said.
“If we go and look at the CAF or FIFA ranking, then we are the favourites because we are the highest ranked of all four in our group but circumstances are in favour of Namibia. The reason is that they scheduled the game on an artificial field, they have had a six week camp to prepare for the game and they play at home. That is why I see a light advantage for them in the game. That does not mean we will not do everything to win because it is in all our good to bring the three points home.”
Vandenbroek decried the culture of leakages that put some of his work in jeopardy.
He warned that a continuation of the culture may ruin the relationship among the players in the game.
“The meaning of my story is that even if there is more structure and order in Zambia, there are too many individuals trying to escape. That is carelessly leaking information to you (media), there are people in this house leaking information and the terrible one is even if I gave a lot of information during the last press conference, some people were eager to find out things that I did not mention,” he said.
“So in the end it is a two way relationship, either I give a lot of information and you keep on that or you go behind my back, you want to know too much then the relationship will be broken, not only from your part, also from the people in this house and players because that is discipline and discipline is one of the main things when you want to build the game and when you want performances.”
He also announced that Zambia would play Gabon in an international friendly on September 11 on the FIFA International day.
The team will enter residential camp on August 30 in Lusaka with the final batch of players expected in camp on Monday September 1.
Vandenbroek was handed the Chipolopolo job with the task of qualifying Zambia to the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations.
Zambia is rooted at the bottom with Namibia on zero points after the first round of matches with the Chipolopolo losing 1-0 at home to Mozambique.
The Chipolopolo face Namibia away in Windhoek on September 7 in a match that will mark Vandenbroek’s debut on the Chipolopolo bench.
Toaster Nsabata (Zanaco), Lawrence Mulenga (Power Dynamos) Kennedy Mweene (Mamelodi Sundowns-RSA)
Solomon Sakala (Zesco United), Gideon Sichone (Green Buffaloes), Gampani Lungu (Supersport-RSA), Isaac Shamujompa (Buildcon) Luka Banda (Napsa Stars), Stoppila Sunzu (FC Metz-France), Kabaso Chongo (TP Mazembe-Congo), Lawrence Chungu (Buildcon), Emmanuel Mbola (Hapoel Raanana-Israel)
Nathan Sinkala (TP Mazembe-Congo), Sululani Phiri (Polokwane-RSA), Enock Mwepu (RB Salzburg-Austria), Jackson Chirwa (Green Buffalos), Lubambo Musonda (Gangzasar Kapan-Armenia), Clatous Chama (Simba-Tanzania) Spencer Sautu (Green Eagles), Rainford Kalaba (TP Mazembe-Congo), Bruce Musakanya (Red Arrows)
Augustine Mulenga (Orlando Pirates-RSA), Fashion Sakala (Oostende-Belgium), Justin Shonga (Orlando Pirates-RSA), Patson Daka (RB Salzburg-Austria), Lazarous Kambole (Zesco).