After a checkered history that saw them finishing as runner-ups twice, and in third place three times, Zambia finally bagged their only Africa Cup of Nations title in 2012.
Chipolopolo emerged victorious when Gabon and Equatorial Guinea co-hosted the African football showpiece, as the Zambians celebrated at the same place that saw their heroes’ plane crashing on the shores of Libreville in 1993.
Gabon / Equatorial Guinea 2012
Zambia started their Group A campaign with an unexpected 2-1 win over Senegal, followed by a 2-2 draw with Libya. Christopher Katongo’s lone strike gave them win over hosts Equatorial Guinea to reach the quarterfinals where they cruised 3-0 over Sudan. In the semifinal Emmanuel Mayuka scored twelve minutes from time as Zambia defeated Ghana 1-0. A barren stalemate with Cote d’Ivoire in the final meant the game went to penalties. Stoppila Sunzu scored the decisive kick as Chipolopolo won 8-7 to lift their first ever AFCON title.
Coach: Herve Renard (France)
Final: Zambia 0-0 (8-7 on penalties) Cote d’Ivoire
Top Scorer: Christopher Katongo, Emmanuel Mayuka (3 goals)