Monday, June 24, 2024

Outside Lusaka, Copperbelt: The marginalized football regions

LIVINGSTONE: Trekking to Lusaka or the Copperbelt, is the sole ambition for many Zambian football players. Outside the borders of the aforementioned regions, the optimism of making strides in a footballing career, is certainly in short supply.

It is within the two regions, where the biggest clubs: Nkana, Mufulira Wanderers, Zesco United, Zanaco, to mention just the few, in the flagship tier are domiciled. Where the Super division trophy has been hovering, umpteenth, since it’s formative days.

If doing arithmetics is as convoluted equations or something enigma to you. To simplify things, the Zambia Super league title has switched hands, between Copperbelt and Lusaka, 51 times since it’s inception in 1962.

The top-flight is made-up of 20 clubs. Fourteen hailed in Lusaka and Copperbelt; Southern in possession of 3 slots, the remnant, intrinsic to Central and North-western, respectively. This simply connotes, the Super league graces it’s presence in only four provinces, out of ten.

See, the reason why the two regions are highly deemed as the stepping-stone to the the gravy train? The stepping-stone to donning the National team’s orange and green colours–albeit, you can still make the Chipolopolo roster, outside Lusaka and the Copperbelt.

DEPILATED SPORTS INFRASTRUCTURES

While touring the Northern, Western, Southern, Eastern and North-western parts of the country, depilated sports infrastructures or abandoned works is what you find. Thanks to the empty promises and the nonexistence of bona-fide powers that be.

The Maramba Stadium in Livingstone, is the compelling example, which initially plans to renovate it were honourable, but soured when works were abandoned at the midst, 4 years-ago.

The handful of match venues available in the province, Supersport, the Pay-TV channel and official broadcasting partners will dare not take their cameras, saving our faces from ignominy to the rest of the Sub-Sahara Africa.

No wonder, International matches are forever held, either at the National Heroes, in Lusaka or maneuvered to Levy Mwanawasa Stadium, in Ndola of the Copperbelt province–before then, at Konkola Stadium in Chilabombwe.

Looking forward to the time when pigs shall have wings to fly, when hosting of Chipolopolo matches will be extended to places like Moongu, at the door step of Chief Lewanika, the Lozi speaking people’s panjandrum. The time when provinces, outside Lusaka and Copperbelt, will be at one-apiece represented in the top-flight.

[The Author, is the Sports Editor of the Community and monthly Newspaper, Frontline News. An African football scribe and geek, contributing to various indigenous and foreign publications: ZamFoot in Zambia, KingFut in Egypt, formerly Kenya’s Soka25East and It’sgoal.com in Nigeria.]

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3 Comments

  1. Great analysis…..its simply the lack of infrastructure. A lot of kids love the sport but they don’t have the football pitch and the ball. That is where we miss the real talent.

  2. I am watching the Zesco united vs Napsa stars. Hey , Napsa stars must work hard in terms of intilling discipline. That player and certainly many in his team who were shouting at the referees have a serious discipline problem. One wonders if they really know the rules of the game.How on earth would a goalie commit a foul like that one with the ball not only in his possesion but in his hands and in an area where he is protected as compared to any other player, an area alternatively called the goal keepers own area? We can say the worst about this player but it is only out of respect that we reserve other words.

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