Mulenga says Chipolopolo will have to work hard to overcome Uganda
When the Zambia national soccer team takes to the turf on what is expected to be a hot Saturday afternoon at the Levy Mwanawasa Stadium in Ndola, one striking new feature in the ranks of the African champions will be the presence of a towering and powerful striker. Jacob Mulenga of top Dutch side FC Utrecht makes a return to the Chipolopolo after nearly a year out with injuries.
During the period of his absence from the squad, Zambia’s leading scorer at Angola 2010 Nations Cup of Angola 2010 missed the crowning moment when Zambia won the trophy in Gabon and Equatorial Guinea during AFCON 2012 at the Stade de l'Amitié on 12th February in Libreville. Jacob missed the glorious moment.
He also missed the start of the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil campaign. But since his return to action, he has put in commanding performances for his Netherlands club, announcing his return by doing what he is known best for – bulldozing defence lines and firing past goalkeepers. Now he is looking forward to making the most of his time with the African champions. He is raring to go with an array of other stars that will leave Zambia Coach Herve Renard spoiled for choice and with a selection headache. The Zambia coach has the full complement of all players at his disposal.
28 year old Mulenga told Cafonline.com that he believes Zambia needs to work hard to overcome Uganda as there are no easy international games anymore and every team is playing to reach Africa Cup of Nations finals.
Cafonline.com: How does it feel to make a return to the Zambian squad after such a long period ?
Mulenga : It’s good to be back. It’s been a long time. I’m just happy to be back and see everyone in the team again. I am looking forward to being with the squad and being part of the game on Saturday.
Cafonline.com: Zambia has not played Uganda Cranes in competition qualification matches for a very long time now. How much do you know about the Cranes and what is your strategy for the game?
Mulenga: Yes, it has been a long time and we don’t know much about Uganda. As a team, we have to share what we know about them. But I’m sure the coach and the rest of his technical staff have done the necessary research and home work and have a good plan for Saturday which will ensure that we win. Am sure we will win.
Cafonline.com: What do you think will be key for you to beat Uganda on Saturday?
Mulenga: We will have to work hard. With hard work, we will win the match. But we just have to win this match. We will put everything in God’s hands to ensure that we win.
HOSTS COUNTRIES OF NEXT CAF COMPETITIONSOrange CAN 2012
REGULATIONS / PUBLICATIONSCAF Statutes