This is the time for Zambia to return to AFCON—Sakala

Zambia leading striker Fashion Sakala has said time has come for the Chipolopolo to bounce back to the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) finals.

The Rangers player said this upon joining the squad for training in Lusaka ahead of the trip to Ivory Coast for the AFCON Group H qualifier scheduled for June 3.

Sakala said he was very excited to return to the squad after having missed two games due to Covid-19 restrictions.

“These games are very important for us especially the first one. We just have to have confidence and believe that we need to win. We don’t need to doubt ourselves…this is the time for us to play AFCON,” he said.

“We don’t have excuses to give if we fail. We have to believe and do everything to make the country proud. If we stick together and keep on believing, I think everything is possible.”

Zambia will then welcome Comoros in Lusaka on June 7 in the second match for the group that comprises Lesotho.

Zambia coach Aljosa Asanovic has since released a 25-member squad with notable names being Sakala, Leicester City’s Patson Daka and Enock Mwepu of Brighton and Hove Albion.

However, goalkeeper Kennedy Mweene is not available due to club commitments with DStv Premiership champions Mamelodi Sundowns in South Africa.

South Africa’s AmaZulu forward Augustine Mulenga ruled out alongside Simba SC’s Clatous Chama due to injuries.

Zambia have struggled to impress at AFCON since 2012 when they won the trophy

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