Chipolopo plans to rewrite record against Nigeria, says Kalaba
Zambia skipper, Rainford Kalaba, has predicted a tough battle between two former African champions when they welcome Nigeria on Sunday in a World Cup qualifier, but at the same time he expects victory, reports africanfootball.com.
Zambia were crowned African champions in 2012, while Nigeria’s Super Eagles have won the AFCON thrice – 1980, 1994 and 2013.
Kalaba, who Nigeria coach, Gernot Rohr, has singled out as one of the key Zambian stars, said the Chipolopolo will give everything to win in front of their fans.
“We are both former African champions and it will be a tough game, but we expect a good result on Sunday,” he declared.
“We will all put 100 per cent on Sunday and it will be a good thing to give the new coach a first win in his first game.
“The players are looking good and looking forward to the game. The confidence is there and the boys are smiling. We are expecting a good game on Sunday.
“Football is played on pitch. It’s how we prepare ourselves. By the final whistle we will know who carries the day.”
The TP Mazembe star said he also expects the fans to come out in their numbers to push the Chipolopolo to victory.
“The fans must rally be behind the team, this game is crucial not just for the players, but the whole country,” he charged.
“And we know that when the Levy Stadium is full, we always have good results.”
Like Nigeria, Zambia failed to qualify for next year’s AFCON in Gabon and Kalaba said that failure is behind them and what is important now are the World Cup qualifiers.
While Kalaba is dreaming of turning the table, the Super Eagles say they are committed to improving Nigeria’s superior record against Zambia at senior international level.
Skipper Mikel John Obi confirmed yesterday that the team is ready for the 2018 FIFA World Cup qualification duels, which will see Nigeria play Zambia away on Sunday and host Algeria on November 12 before four more games next year.