BESTON Chambeshi says Zambia is not a small team in terms of football. Chambeshi is relishing the pressure of replicating his COSAFA Under-20 Cup success at senior level with Chipolopolo. The Zambia assistant coach has been handed the reins to oversee Chipolopolo’s 2018 COSAFA Cup campaign at the tournament South Africa is hosting from May 27 to June 9.
Chambeshi has already tasted regional success after winning the 2016 COSAFA Under-20 Cup, achieved with the same side that went on to win the 2017 Under-20 Africa Cup of Nations a few months later.
“I have been in the system for some time and again, it is an honour to take charge of the team,” Chambeshi said according to the COSAFA website.
“I have been there before. All we need to do is just to be strong and work hard and do well there.”
He will mark his senior debut against Namibia on June 2 when they meet in the quarterfinals at The Old Peter Mokaba Stadium in Limpopo.
Namibia has prevailed over Zambia in their last two COSAFA Cup clashes.
“Our target is the first game of the tournament. We have to take it seriously and plan for it,” Chambeshi said.
“Namibia has been a stubborn team against us ever since we started playing them. They have grown, we have to respect them, but they should respect us too because Zambia is not a small team in terms of football.”
Meanwhile, Chipolopolo kicked off their COSAFA Cup preparations on May 14 with a 30-member provisional side entering camp for four days in Lusaka.
Chipolopolo broke camp yesterday for players to attend to their domestic league obligations. Chambeshi and his men will regroup on May 20 in Lusaka for the team’s final pre-tournament camp in Lusaka.
“We need two local friendlies and we may ask for one of the two big teams here for a game,” Chambeshi said.
“Hopefully we can also play our Zambia Under-20 side, who are in camp preparing for their 2019 Under-20 AFCON qualifiers. We are happy with what they did well in Rwanda, where they won 2-0, and we may ask them to help us too with a game.”