Sunday, June 23, 2024

Zambia’s hex on Zebras continues

The road of misery for the national soccer team, the Zebras, in the African Nations Championships (CHAN) continued following their elimination by Zambia in this year’s competition.

Zambia beat the Zebras 2-0 on Saturday to make it 3-1 overall. Both teams had earlier on drawn a goal apiece last weekend in Molepolole. The elimination of the Zebras means that they are yet to reach the second round and, eventually, finals.

It was also the second elimination by Zambia in the same competition.

Zambia once eliminated Botswana about five years ago while the team was still under the tutelage of Briton, Colywn Rowe.

The loss by the Zebras has put further strain on coach Stanley Tshosane. His critics have, of late, been calling for his head but the question is would his firing solve the dwindling performance of the team.

The corridors of the Botswana Football Association are already awash with rumours that he has already been sacked. His contract and even the remuneration of the new coach are reported to be giving the association, sleepless nights.

Against Zambia on Saturday, the Zebras managed to soldier on and it was goalless at half time. The complexion of the game changed in the second half following some dubious decisions of the referee who appeared to be partial towards the hosts, Zambia. Zambia ended up taking a lead and versatile defender, Obuile Ncenga, was controversially sent off. This made things a bit difficult for the Zebras who had to equalize with one man down.

Zambia ended up scoring the second goal from what appeared to have been an offside position but both the referee and the lineman gave it.

After the match, the Zebras players nearly bayed for the referee’s blood but Zambian soldiers were quick to avert the situation.

Meanwhile the victory by Zambia means that their good run on the Zebras continues. Botswana rarely defeats Zambia in either official or friendly matches. Zambia will now play Zimbabwe after the latter defeated Mauritius. The winner will qualify for the finals that will be held in South Africa.


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