By Mercy Chewe
The Zambia National Soccer Team has commenced primary preparations for the June back-to-back 2023 Africa Cup qualifiers.
Zambia will face Ivory Coast on June 3 in their opening AFCON qualifier before hosting Comoros four days later at National Heroes Stadium in Lusaka.
Chipolopolo coach Aljosa Asanovic led the team of local players in the first training in Lusaka on Wednesday morning.
Speaking to journalists after training, Asanovic said he was excited to link up with the squad of local players.
“Yes it is the first day for the local camp. I am very happy to see again our players. Really we are enjoying the time. We are trying to refresh our players after the Zambian championship. I am so happy about that,” he said.
“These players deserve to be in camp with us as part of the AFCON team. I saw so many quality players before this camp and we will continue working together and see what happens. Always we look for quality, speed, skill, the character and don’t worry in that 22 players we have the quality,” Asanovic said.
He told journalists and soccer fans to believe in the national team ahead of the AFCON qualifiers.
“We have everything. Be positive about everything. Please again be positive because we need positivity. I am sure with you (media) because you are the most important people also in Zambia give these guys (players) good notes, positive notes for everybody. I am so optimistic about my boys,” Asanovic said.
“I am optimistic because for me and also for you (media) it’s enough to be a loser and I want us to be winners.
Come on Zambia believe us. I believe so much in my team. You should also believe in the team. Believe the Patson, believe the Enock, believe the Kelvin, believe the people who are working with these guys. Please trust this team because this team deserve the support from you especially you (media),” the Croatian emphasised.
Zambia will also face the Comoros in this AFCON qualifying campaign.
Alice Nachilembe is a Journalist who yearns for a better country with leaders being accountable to their mandate without oppressing the governed.