ABSA Cup Preview: War drums sounds
Not many gave Mumamba Numba a chance of doing anything at ZESCO United when he replaced George Lwandamina.
Now he stands on a verge of a cup and league double.
ZESCO are top of the league and now face Numba’s childhood club from Chililabombwe Sharp Konkola Blades Fc this afternoon at Arthur Davies Stadium.
“It is written in my contract to win the league and defend the Absa Cup,” the soft spoken Numba said at the Garden Court Hotel in Kitwe at the pre-match press.
Across the table was a friend. A friend with whom Numba won the 1998 Mosi Cup under late boss Benjamin “Tigana” Bwalya.
This friend now stands in the way of Numba’s double ambitions.
His name is Lewingtone Mujembe who is standing in for Charles Chisala Bwale .
Mujembe says, ” Numba knows us but we are ready for ZESCO.”
Indeed, when Numba left Zanaco he was unveiled as Blades technical advisor.
It looked like a pro bono arrangement which was brought to an unceremoniously abrupt end as Numba was announced as ZESCO United boss.
It was said Numba was “too small for ZESCO.”
Now he has a chance to shame his critics by taking out Blades without nolstagia as his contract may be at risk with failure.
I caught up with recently signed striker Chitiya Mususu at the Ndola Squash Club over lunch in midweek.
“How many are you scoring?”
“I have just recovered from injury,” he said.
“If I am selected am raring to go,” the son of Bishop Paul Mususu said.
ZESCO have a frontline to die for. Kalengo Winston , Jesse Were, young Enock Sakala Junior and John Chingandu are cogs capable of unlocking any defence in the land on their day.
Blades say they are representing Eden University National First Division where they lead the log as a motivation to test themselves for topflight action.
Emmanuel Mwaba, the Blades talisman, may score. But Williard Phiri, their excellent shot stopper, has to carry his A+ certificate from the Eden University to deny ZESCO.
And Numba’s replacement at Zanaco Chris Kaunda faces Wedson Nyirenda for the second time in seven days.
Zanaco beat Dynamos 2-1 at Sunset with goals from in-form Moses Favour Phiri Moses Phiri either side of a Marvin Jere equaliser.
Is it repeat or revenge?
Dynamos assistant coach Stephen Mwansa said he won the forerunner of the Absa Cup, the Barclays Cup, with Nyirenda as coaches for the record winners ZESCO and would want to repeat the feat with Lusaka Dynamos.
The duo with Ian Bakala has the tools to deliver.
Striker Emmanuel Chabula who said Elite is “ready” for the challenge of the Bankers, Collins Sikombe, Botswana star Mothusi Cooper, Jere but Monga Ndala and his defenders including Paul Banda Sergio must not be at sixes and sevens to avoid a second defeat in as many meetings with Zanaco.
May be the Bankers’ shock 2-0 loss to Young Green Eagles in a rescheduled league match may give Dynamos encouragement.
But Zanaco may want to exorcise those demons of defeat on Dynamos.
Let the matches in the 2021 Absa Cup semi-final start.
We are watching live on SuperSport.
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