COSAFA title defence bleak as Micho apologises over Chipolopolo performance

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SUN SPORTS writes
@SunZambian

THE Zambia National team’s COSAFA Cup title defence is very bleak after losing their second successive Group A match at the ongoing tournament South Africa is hosting at Nelson Mandela Bay.


Chipolopolo coach Milutin ‘Micho’ Sredojevic apologised to fans following Zambia’s shocking loss to Eswatini at the ongoing COSAFA Cup in South Africa.


The five-time champions lost 1-0 to Eswatini to stay bottom of Group A and the only team on zero points after two games and another two left to play.


Saturday’s defeat comes two days after Micho boys squandered a one-nil halftime lead to lose 2-1 to Lesotho in their opening game on July 8.


“From our side it is very hard to accept that we are losing matches. I believe we do not deserve to lose,” he said.


“I would like to use this opportunity to apologise to our supporters back home that we have lost the game,” Micho said during a live television post-match interview.


“I cannot blame anyone. I can only say players really tried their best. Unfortunately the best of our players was not enough to get us a better result today.”


Limping Zambia has fielded a strong squad which is being captained by 2012 AFCON champion Kennedy Mweene at the regional championship.


“It is not about how strong you are, it is about what you put on the field of play. And it is all about results,” Micho said.
The Serb has admitted being under pressure as Zambia coach.
The five-time champions lost 1-0 to Eswatini to stay bottom of Group A and the only team on zero points after two games and another two left to play.


Saturday’s defeat comes two days after Milutin ‘Micho’ Sredojevic’s boys squandered a one-nil halftime lead to lose 2-1 to Lesotho in their opening game on July 8.
Striker’s Brian Mwila’s 40th minute miss of the year from point-blank range in front of an inviting goal epitomized disjointed Chipolopolo’s form on the day.
The deadlock was broken in the 53rd minute when Eswatini defender Sandile Gamedze out-jumped a bunch of static Zambian defenders to head-in midfielder Sabelo Gamedze’s corner.
From then on, Eswatini were in control, albeit in defensive mode, and they didn’t panic for the remainder of the match, comfortably soaking up the tame pressure exhibited by Zambia.
Zambia, though, did score in the 88th minute when Gamphani Lungu headed-in an Augustine Mulenga delivery into the box.
However, the goal was ruled out for offside.
Zambia are last while Lesotho and Botswana have 3 points each.
Eswatini lead Group A tied on 6 points with second placed South Africa.
Chipolopolo face Botswana on July 13 and South Africa on July 14 as they prepare for what is looking like a trophy handover ceremony in their remaining two Group A matches.

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