Cosafa U20: Zambia make it 2 out of 2 with win over Congo DR
Zambia 2-0 Congo DR (Benson Kolala 17′, Prince Mumba 24′)
Hosts Zambia kept on course hopes for a semi-final spot in the 2018 MOPANI Copper Mines COSAFA Under-20 Championships when they beat guest nation Democratic Republic of Congo 2 – 0 in a game played at Nkana Stadium.
Coach Charles Bwale made two changes to the starting XI bringing in Prince Mumba who scored a brace in the opening game of the tournament and Benson Kolala for Emmanuel Mwiinde and Albert Kangwanda.
Bwale’s introductions to the team proved decisive in the fixture both Kolala and Mumba were on target.
Kolala opened the scores in the 18th minute when he struck on a volley benefiting from an Andrew Phiri cross. The 2017 U20 African Champions made it two with a beautiful move that saw skipper Edward Chilufya start a move in the midfield and played Lameck Banda in space inside the penalty area. Banda decided to the lay the ball for Mumba who was arriving late in the box for him to finish for Zambia’s second goal and his third of the tournament.
There were some nervy moments in the Zambia defense but the Bradley Mweene was up to the task. The Young Chipolopolo continued to look the more likely to score in the second half.
Substitute Mwiya Malumo had the best chance of the half when he outpaced his markers who were playing a high line to go one on one with Nathan Mobbaelua in the DRC goal but the keeper did well to save his shot.
The result means that DR Congo, with defeats in their opening two games, now cannot make the semifinals and will be going home after Saturday’s final match against Malawi.
In the other Group A match, Mozambique had to come from behind to secure a point against the Malawians in a 1-1 draw, a result that leaves both sides still in contention for a place in the knockout stages. Malawi grabbed a first half lead through Banda but were pegged back on the hour mark as Adamo Alifa equalized for the Mozambicans, who could still take top spot in the pool if they beat Zambia in their final game on Saturday.
In Group C, Zimbabwe sealed their place in the semifinals on Thursday without kicking a ball after Angola were held to a 0-0 draw by Botswana in their Group C clash at the Nkana Stadium. That result means that Zimbabwe cannot be caught at the top of the table after they opened their campaign with a pair of victories and a full haul of six points.
COSAFA uses head-to-head to separate teams level on points, if three or more teams are equal then they are separated by goal-difference or, if needed, by goal-scored.
Friday will be a rest day at the competition, with the action to resume at the weekend with three more key fixtures in which Groups A and B be decided. Zambia will clash with Mozambique at the Nkana Stadium, while Malawi and DR Congo do battle at the Shinde Stadium.
Zambia U20 Starting XI v DRC
1.Bradley Mweene, 2. Andrew Phiri, 3. Prince Mumba, 4. Gideon Miyanda, 5. Kingsley Hakwiya, 6. Oliver Lumbiya, 10. Lameck Banda (Mwiya Malumo), 12. Benson Kolala, 13, Christopher Katongo, 14. Edward Chilufya ©, 17, Klings Kangwa (Clinton Lubula)
DRC U20 Starting XI v Zambia
1.Nathan Mobbaelua, 2. Henock Mangindu, 7 Isaac Tshibangu, 10. Masikini Batista, 12. Steven Ebuela, 13. Makunda Mawawu, 14. Batoba Makangila, 15. Idumba Fasika, 17. Jackson Muleka, 18. Mbala Nsingi, 20. Wamba Kikasa
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