Janza rates Kola, Kalu doesn’t as striker is being judged on past form
Israel based striker Rodger Kola’s omission from Zambia’s 27-man African Cup of Nations provisional squad which Chipolopolo Boys coach Honour Janza has unveiled has left many wondering what criteria is used to select players.
But Zambianfootball.co.zm can exclusively reveal that Kola is highly rated by Janza but highly placed sources including Chipolopolo players have indicated that Football Association of Zambia, FAZ President Kalusha Bwalya has never believed in the 25 year old.
“The problem for Kola is that the President [Kalusha] has never been impressed with him. As you might be aware, Presido [Kalu] still plays a major role in the selection of the team,” a Chipolopolo Boys technical bench member told the ZamFoot Crew on Tuesday evening in Lusaka.
Rightly so, Kola has never delivered in senior Chipolopolo shirts save for the match Janza was in-charge in a friendly match against Chile prior to the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.
In the past whenever previous Chipolopolo Boys coaches called him, Kola would either fail to pitch up or pull out of the squad owing to niggling minor injuries and that made him go down the pecking orders.
The problem has also being compounded with Kola failing to adapt in Belgium and this resulted in him sent back on loan to Israel.
“There has never been patience on Kola like Emmanuel Mayuka, Nathan Sinkala or Emmanuel Mbola. And the player is aware of this. Imagine the way Mayuka earns call ups.
In Israel, Kola has already scored 7 goals in 13 league matches for his table topping club compared to Evans Kangwa who has just scored 3 goals while the latter has been called.
“He is scoring the goals in Israel but Kalusha hasn’t seen any of those goals. Kalu still thinks it is the same old boy.
At 25, Kola seems to have come out of age and more mature.
“The same goes to Zanaco’s Moses Phiri, Kalusha is believed to have categorically told the technical bench not to waste time on the striker.
But under Renard or Bonetti’s tenure, there was no interference from Kalusha but things have changed now since a local coach is now in-charge.
“With the previous coaches, it will only end as a discussion but now Kalu is like the Technical Director. Whatever he says is been implemented by the coaching stuff.
Many believe Kola could have offered something different to the team especially with Jacob Mulenga also out of the team. His aerial strength and hold up play could be key.
‘Sate Sate and Evans Kangwa play with goal the goal in front of them while Kola can play with goal on his back. He is a target man and could bring others into play.
With team lacking height, he could have useful at set pieces both defending and attacking. Four of his goals this season are headers.
But it’s a wild guess to say James Chamanga is there in the team to play the ‘target man [Kola] role’.
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