ZAMBIA women national soccer team will this afternoon aim to solidify their berth at 2016 Cameroun Africa Women’s Championship (AWC) finals when they face Zimbabwe in a second qualification round in Harare.
The Shepolopolo are two legs away from making a second appearance at the AWC but face an uphill battle against Zimbabwe.
Zambia is hoping to secure a first leg win at Rufaro Stadium this afternoon before she hosts Zimbabwe in a return leg on Sunday.
Coach Albert Kachinga said this was a difficult game in the back yard of a team that Zambia prevented from qualifying for the 2014 Namibia AWC with a 2-0 aggregate scoreline.
“We are targeting a win to be in an advantageous position in the return leg. The girls are in form and injury-free. I expect a tough game; both teams are fighting for qualification,” he said.
The Shepolopolo beat Namibia 5-3 on aggregate to reach the second round and Zimbabwe ousted Tanzania.
Meanwhile, Zimbabwe coach Shadreck Mlauzi said his lasses will not allow Zambia to shatter their dream of qualifying to the AWC.
“Yes, they deterred us from reaching the 2014 AWC, but this is a new season. We will play for victory and nothing else,” he said.
Skipper Annie Kibanji will lead the Shepolopolo at the back with Anita Mulenga, Martha Tembo, Grace Zulu, Emelda Musonda and Jane Chalwe.
Barbra Banda and Mary Wilombe are expected to supply the frontline with balls while Grace Chanda, Hellen Mubanga and Noria Sosala are tipped to give Zambia the needed victory.
Meanwhile, Zesco United Football Club yesterday left for Bamako ahead of their CAF Champions league second round first leg tie against Stade Malien.
Coach George Lwandamina in an interview before the team’s departure at Simon Mwansa Kapwepwe International Airport in Ndola yesterday said the team was ready for Saturday’s encounter.
“I believe in the team I have. I don’t have to know the opponent. The boys will play as a unit to bring down Stade Malien. We are not under pressure, we are ready for anything,” he said.