Zambia coach Bruce Mwape bemoaned a litany of mistakes as he expressed disappointment over his side’s heavy defeat in their Women’s World Cup opener against Japan on Sunday.
Zambia, making their debut at the tournament, suffered a one-sided 5-0 loss to the former world champions in Hamilton which Mwape said came as a result of tactical indiscipline.
But he said they would look to come back in their next group C clash against Spain in Auckland on Wednesday and keep up hopes of progressing past the first round.
“We made a lot of mistakes but it is not the end of the world, we still have a chance,” said Mwape at the post-match press conference after Saturday’s defeat at the Waikato Stadium.
“We are sure we can come back and fight for a place and qualify for the next round,” he added.
Zambia were thoroughly outplayed by Japan, which Mwape said had come as something of a surprise.
“You can say that inexperience cost us but we have played against teams of Japan’s quality before. We don’t make to make excuses but we just did not play well this evening. It was very disappointing.
“There was a lot of panic in possession, instead of keeping the ball some of the players just tried to kick it forward, giving possession back to the opponent.
“The tactical discipline wasn’t there, especially on the flanks. That’s where Japan got their goals from.”
To beat Spain in their next outing, Mwape said Zambia need to work on correcting their mistakes.
“If we correct the negatives it will help us a going into the next game. Some say we might lose hope but we still want to fight and we want to leave a mark on the tournament,” he concluded.