Football Sport

Battle for quarters

FASHION Sakala leads his teammates in celebrating after scoring against Iran during the 2017 FIFA U-20 World Cup group C match at Jeju World Cup Stadium in Seogwipo, South Korea yesterday. PICTURE: FIFA/GETTY IMAGES

STEPHEN PHIRI, Jeju, South Korea
ZAMBIA’s ambitions of setting a new target at the FIFA Under-20 World Cup today comes under scrutiny when they face Germany in a round of 16 match with coach Beston Chambeshi saying revenge is not on his mind.

‘Quicksilver’Chambeshi was part of the national team that lost 4-0 to the Jürgen Klinsmann-led West Germany in the quarter-finals at the 1988 Seoul Olympics.
Klinsmann scored a hat-trick on September 25, 1988.
“It is a big game playing Germany, they have produced great players and they have been to the Under-20 World Cup and have won the cup once. It is nice for Zambia to meet Germany after that Seoul Olympics defeat.
“It is a different ball game and we have got new boys who have come on the scene and that time Germany had the likes of Klinsmann but we also had very good players. But this is a different scenario… it is the World Cup and we have to win. In football there is no revenge, we have buried that Seoul Olympics defeat but we have to do our best to overcome Germany,” Chambeshi said.
Zambia are favourites to progress to the last eight having won two and lost one to top Group C with six points while Germany drew one, lost one and won once in Group B to finish third with four points at par with second-placed Mexico.
The Europeans qualified to the second round as one of the four best third finishers.
With Germany not convincing in the last three matches, Zambia will take advantage of the situation to advance to the quarter-finals.
At the Canada 2007 World Cup, Zambia reached the round of 16 after losing 2-1 to Nigeria.
Zambia’s maiden appearance in 1999 ended with a group stage elimination in Nigeria.
Tonight, Chambeshi and his boys will be looking forward to going a step further.
Zambia have won two matches at Jeju World Cup Stadium and Germany might be the next victims to fall.
Zambia edged Portugal 2-1, thumped Iran 4-2, and with such a record, the young Chipolopolo will stroll on the pitch bubbling with confidence.
Zambia’s 1-0 defeat to Costa Rica was in Cheonan.
Patson Daka and Fashion Sakala will lead the attack in a 4:4:2 formation.
Daka has netted once while Fashion has been on target twice.
‘’Germany are tactically good in defence but we have got boys who can change at any given time. We have got good wingers and strikers. We may need to change our style and break their defence using our strikers.
“Pray for us and have faith in this team. We will give Germany a good game,” Chambeshi said.
Germany coach Guido Streichsbier will instruct his defenders Phil Neumann and Dominik Schad to frustrate Daka and Fashion.
Streichsbier described Daka and Fashion as Zambia’s heartbeat.
Forwards Musonda Siame and Conlyde Luchanga might be introduced if the going gets tough.
Edward Chilufya, Emmanuel Banda and Enock Mwepu will dictate play in midfield.
Chambeshi will choose between Boyd Musonda and Ngosa Sunzu for the holding role.
Sunzu, the younger brother of Chipolopolo defender Stopilla, had a cracking game against Costa Rica while Musonda has struggled in the last three games.
Harrison Chisala is another option to play in front of the defence.
Streichsbier has predicted a tough match.
“I think in a play-off game, it’s always 50-50. It doesn’t matter if the first three games were okay. Maybe Zambia has a better feeling because they won two games but after 90 minutes, one team stays in the tournament, the other has to go home,” Streichsbier said.
He said Zambia are at the World Cup to prove a point.
“We saw them in the Africa Cup and we have seen them in the World Cup. So we know we have to bring our very good performance to have a chance of going to the next round,” Streichsbier said.
Germany started the campaign with a 2-0 defeat to Venezuela, battled to a goalless draw with Mexico and beat Vanuatu 3-2.
Streichsbier will rely on Malcolm Badu, Emmanuel Iyoha and Suat Serdar, all scorers in the win over Vanuatu.  
Skipper Solomon Sakala will be back in the line-up and will partner Moses Nyondo.
Solomon missed the match against Costa Rica due to suspension.
Shemmy Mayembe is a sure starter on the right flank while Chambeshi might unleash Muchindu Muchindu on the left wing, relegating Prosper Chiluya to the bench.
The match will kick off at 13:00 hours Zambian time.


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