Up close with Signs Chibambo: A Nakambala cult hero who mesmerized Nigerian League fans
Former Zambia U-23 national team striker Signs ‘Wonder’ Chibambo is one of the few Zambian football players who made an impact in West-Africa.
Chibambo was part of the Heartland FC’s 2009 impressive squad that reached the final of the CAF Champions League, runners, up in the NPFL and won the Nigeria FA Cup.
The ZamFoot Crew caught up with Chibambo who says the Nigerian side is his favorite of the clubs he has played for in his career.
Chibambo played for the Spartans between 2008 and 2010 before moving to the Egyptian side, Al Masry.
Chibambo says he picked the Owerri based outfit because he felt at home in Nigeria and he had fans in his first few games despite being a foreign player.
“My favorite team is Heartland, I had fans in only 5 games which made me feel I was at home,” he said.
Chibambo started his career at Nakambala Leopards before moving to Zesco United and after his five-year stint out of the country, he returned back to Mazabuka to join the Sugar Boys.
Chibambo told the ZamFoot Crew that Power Dynamos legend Kennedy Mudenda is among the toughest players he has faced in his career while Lusaka Dynamos was the toughest team he faced during his early days in the Zambia Super League.
“Kennedy Mudenda, he was very fastest and was a problem when meeting power dynamos,” he said.
“While at Nakambala Lusaka Dynamos was a challenge to us coz they used to play a fast and passing game with young players and were well taught,” he added.
The former Hapoel Ra’anana who is now a registered FIFA agent believes the league is improving but he feels the coaches could do more.
“The Zambian Supper League is improving despite having coaches who do not want to protest their jobs by pleasing relationships.”
The Nakambala Leopards cult hero was also quick to give advice to his childhood club for them to be a success story.
“My team should always hear from there people in Mazabuka. Nakambala Football Club is for the entire Mazabuka and Everyone. If they hear from there own people (the fans) the team will be a giant team,” Chibambo told the ZamFoot Crew.
“I remembered those days when Nakambala were lacking on fast registration all clubs in lower-division used to help them teams like Kascol Rangers, Mazabuka United, etc. By now there is no relation and no one wants to help the team in any way.”
“Other clubs have better players but Nakambala pays more than them. Nakambala can be a big club if they use a good channel and have the right people in the right positions,” he added.
Chibambo’s club career spans over 12 years and has played for clubs like Nakambala Leopards, ZESCO United, Heartland F.C in Nigeria, Egyptian side, El-Masry, Vietnamese side SQC Binh Dinh, Israeli side Hapoel Ra’anana and Napsa Stars.
Chibambo also featured for the Zambia U23 national team between 2007and 2010. ‘Wonder’ featured in the qualifying matches for Beijing Olympic Games in the group comprising Ivory Coast, Mali, and Senegal.
He was also part of the Zambia Under-23 squad that qualified and played at the 2007 All-Africa Games in Algeria. He scored two goals at the tournament.
Below are some of Chibambo’s major achievements:
1. Nigeria best foreign player of the year 2009
2. Gold medal winner in Nigerian FA cup 2009
3. Silver medallist in the African Champions League with Heartland 2009
4. Runner-up, Nigeria Glo Premier League 2009 with Heartland.
5. BP Top Eight silver medal.
6. Won most promising player of the year (Zambia).
7) Nigeria FA Cup top goalscorer 2009
8) Zambia Super League Champion 2007
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