Football Association of Zambia (FAZ) President Andrew Kamanga has explained the thinking behind the Chipolopolo Boys friendly matches being played in the United Arab Emirates.
Kamanga who wrote in his weekly update the President’s corner said the current Stadium status in the country makes it hard to play games at home.
Both Levy Mwanawasa Stadium and the National Heroes Stadium are not in good condition with Levy even closed for renovations.
“On the Chipolopolo side of business, the Chipolopolo has assembled in the United Arab Emirates for the two international friendly matches against Egypt and Uganda on October 12 and 17 respectively. We have taken note of the cry for fans to watch these friendly matches on home soil but regrettably our current stadium situation makes it hard to host a FIFA sanctioned match.
Given the limited time to regroup, it becomes logical to settle for a place that is easily accessible to players travelling from Europe and other regions. Our commitment to prepare our teams with quality friendly matches remains top of our priority list,” Kamanga Wrote.
“We are conscious that with the FIFA World Cup qualifiers coming up in November and the Africa Cup of Nations kicking off in January we will not have many opportunities to play quality friendly matches.
Finally, we are keeping our fingers crossed for this Thursday’s Ivory Coast 2023 Africa Cup of Nations draws taking place in Abidjan. The draw will help us refine our plans for preparations so that we align them to the kind of opposition in our group,” he added.
The Chipolopolo Boys will be in Dubai this week for the October 12 international friendly match against Egypt.
Zambia will then face Uganda on October 17 in the final international friendly match of the FIFA window.
Coach Avram Grant has summoned 25 players for duty as part of preparations for the November FIFA World Cup qualifiers that will see Zambia face Congo Brazzaville and Niger.
Grant is also treating the qualifiers as a build up for the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations that will be played in Ivory Coast in January.