Saturday, July 20, 2024

We already in talks with government regards AFCON budget and preparatory program – Kamanga 

Football Association of Zambia (FAZ) President, Andrew Kamanga says the Association is already in discussions with the Government in regards the budget and preparatory program for the Chipolopolo Boys ahead of the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations. 

Kamanga, who was speaking in his weekly update, The President’s corner, said the reason was to be on top of things ahead of the continental showpiece. 

Kamanga feels the Chipolopolo draw for the continental football fiesta is fair but will require adequate preparations for the team to have a good tournament. 

“Overall, the draw is fair but will require adequate preparations to amount to a successful tournament. The work has already begun with the Chipolopolo utilising the FIFA window by playing two international friendly matches. Coach Avram Grant and his troops succumbed to 1-0 loss to Egypt at the Abu Zayed Stadium in the United Arab Emirates while the final match will be played tomorrow against Uganda. These matches are meant to help the technical bench prepare for the assignments ahead,” he said. 

“We have the twin targets of preparing for the FIFA World Cup qualifiers in November and the AFCON. As a first step, we had a team from Zambia having a look at the situation on the ground in San Pedro where Group F will be based. We have a sense of what needs to be done to ensure that the team settles well in that environment before and during the tournament.”

“Our emissaries already had a look at the accommodation sites, training pitches and the match venue. We have already started our engagements with the government on the preparatory program and budget to ensure that we are on top of things,” he added. 

The Chipolopolo Boys were drawn in group F alongside Morocco for theTotalEnergies Africa Cup of Nations Côte d’Ivoire 2023.

Zambia and Morocco meet again after being drawn in the same group for the 2026 FIFA World Cup qualifiers. 

Zambia has also been drawn against neighbours DR Congo, the two time Champions, who beat us in the 1974 final. 

East African side Tanzania who are yet to progress out of the group stage at the continental showpiece. 

The 34th edition of the biennial tournament will kick off on January 13, 2024 and run through to 11 February, 2024.

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