Counting on E/Guinea fortune..Janza expects big things for Chipolopolo
Published On November 20, 2014 » 2959 Views» By Administrator Times » Football, Sports
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.JANZA

.JANZA

By FELIX MALUNGA –

CHIPOLOPOLO coach Honour Janza is praying for favourable conditions in Equatorial Guinea next year to lift Zambia to another Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) triumph.
Janza claimed Zambia was spiritually favoured during the 2012 AFCON finals in Equatorial Guinea which the Chipolopolo eventually won but sadly surrendered the title last year in South Africa.
He observed that it seemed the 2013 AFCON finals in South Africa were not meant for Zambia but he now believes next year’s continental showpiece would avail his charges a real chance of reclaiming the coveted trophy.
During the post-match Press briefing at the Levy Mwanawasa Stadium in Ndola after Zambia edged Cape Verde 1-0 in the final 2015 AFCON qualifier on Wednesday night, Janza said he was hopeful that the atmosphere in Equatorial Guinea next year would be like in 2012.
Having won the 2012 AFCON championship as assistant to Frenchman Herve Renard, Janza is relishing the prospect of lifting the trophy next year in a familiar territory as head coach.
“We had a favourable condition in Equatorial Guinea especially in Bata. I think that area in 2012 somehow I don’t know spiritually it favoured us. Maybe we should pray it does the same this time and if we have a similar situation it will be good to bring the cup back.
“I think 2013 was not meant for the Africa Cup maybe this time is the real Africa Cup which we need to go and defend. For me I think, it’s good and hope we will have a similar atmosphere like we had in 2012 and God willingly we will smile with the trophy,” he said.
Janza said his technical bench now had just over a month to adequately prepare the squad and was hopeful the Chipolopolo would be ready to challenge for the continental championship.
The criticism which he was subjected to after the team’s shaky start to the 2015 AFCON qualifying campaign, Janza said had helped in making the team stay focused and move forward as a united front.
He also said the blending of the juniors with senior players had given his technical bench hope to build a stronger squad for the 2015 AFCON finals.
“The blending of the juniors from the under-20 with the senior team players is giving us a lot of hope that we should be able to build up a good team before the tournament. We have a month or so for us to prepare,” Janza, who is also Football Association of Zambia (FAZ) technical director, said.
He paid tribute to Cape Verde for being good competitors in the qualifiers and jokingly said he hoped the Chipolopolo would not be put in the same group with the Blue Sharks in Equatorial Guinea.
Chipolopolo captain, Nathan Sinkala was full of praise for the upcoming players in the squad, saying he believed they would help the team perform well at the AFCON.
Cape Verde coach, Rui Aguas said he was not surprised that the Blue Sharks finished ahead of the Chipolopolo in Group F because his charges worked hard to earn qualification while skipper, Fernando Valera said the Atlantic Ocean islanders would try to prove that they were a better in Equatorial Guinea than at the 2013 AFCON.
Cape Verde were quarter-finalists at the 2013 AFCON finals which was their first-ever participation in the competition while Zambia, as defending champions, were eliminated in the first round.
The draw for the 2015 AFCON finals set for January 17 – February 8 will be held on December 3 in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea.

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