By Fred Kaweesi
March 5: International friendly
Uganda v Zambia
Patrice Beaumelle believes that the high- profile friendly against Uganda will provide him with the perfect assessment of his new-look Zambia squad.
The Frenchman assumed the helm of the Chipolopolo team in November last year after Herve Renard quit his position to take over at French club Sochaux.
And in a bid to assemble a side that suits his playing philosophy, Beaumelle has invited a 42-member provisional squad for the friendly set for March 5 at the Levy Mwanawasa Stadium in Ndola.
It’s from this pool that Beaumelle will select his best possible side ahead of the 2015 Africa Nations Cup qualifiers in September.
The squad includes 16 foreign-based stars.
“We played them in the previous Africa Cup qualifiers and they are a difficult team. They are one of those good teams that have never qualified for the Africa Cup but they have won CECAFA Cup several times,” Beaumelle said.
Beaumelle was Renard’s assistant when Zambia edged Cranes 9-8 on penalties in Kampala after their two-leg Nations Cup qualifying play-off had ended 1-1 in 2012.
Cranes head coach Micho Sredojevic is expected to name his side early next week.
Zambian sports minister dictates over Nkana
Meanwhile, desperate times call for desperate measures and Zambian sports minister Chishimba Kambwili seems determined to vindicate that adage.
Kambwili has asked the Zambian football association (FAZ) to attach Chipolopolo goalkeeper trainer Davies Phiri to the Nkana Red Devils team ahead of their first round CAF Champions League game against Kampala City Council Authority (KCCA) next Saturday.
Kambwili watched Nkana come from behind to register a 5-2 aggregate win over Mbabane Swallows last Saturday but was disturbed with the quality of goalkeeping and defending.
He then described the goals conceded by Nkana goalkeeper Rabson Muchelen’ganga as silly.
“Those were silly goals that should have been avoided. After the game, I spoke to Kalusha Bwalya so that Davies Phiri can join Nkana’s technical bench as goalkeeper trainer before they play KCCA,” he told Zambia’s Post publication.
Kambwili also cautioned that Nkana’s defence would have to be proactive against the KCCA team.
“The defence should not escort strikers, their job is to stop them and not escort them until they shoot.” Kambwili.
Part of the selected team
Kennedy Mweene, Davies Nkausu, Stoppila Sunzu, Joseph Musonda, Hichani Himoonde, Emmanuel Mbola Donashano Malama, Branson Chama, Rainford Kalaba Nathan Sinkala, Chisa mba Lungu, Felix Katongo, Emmanuel Mayuka, Christopher Katongo, James Chamanga, Jacob Mulenga and Rodger Kola.
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Uganda Cranes to face Zambia on March 5