[By Bright Tembo]
THE Football Association of Zambia says it now has a strong foundation for Zambia’s football after the U20 national team beat South Africa 3-0 in the COSAFA final played at Nkoloma Stadium.
Association general secretary Adrian Kashala said the winning by the boys means well for the Zambian football.
He said it shows how the Association is investing in youth development and that it is also good that the boys have showcased their talent.
Kashala was however quick to say the only thing FAZ needs to work on is on the senior national team where good results are not coming through.
“Well we are happy to host and win the tournament. Our investment in youth football has paid off and it’s good that the boys have showcased their skills. The investment in grassroots football is definitely working out. Of course we have credible youth structures now. I think the benefits might not be seen now but going forward we should be able to reap the benefit of our investment,” he said. “Those that will be there will see the benefit of this. It’s something that we are happy to see that from the grassroots results are visible. The only thing we need to work out is the senior team. That’s where we have a bit of challenges, we are not getting what we should get from the senior players but I think in the next few coming years we should be able to see results that we want.”
Kashala has attributed the current bad form of the senior national soccer team to bad football structures way back in 2012.
“The problem is that we didn’t have such structures. The succession plan was not well managed. You know after we won the 2012 AfCON we all went to sleep and remained with the name Zambia but without really putting structures that could have have continued with the momentum,” said Kashala. “Most of our players who were in the 2012 team have stopped playing football almost at the same time and this has affected the team now, but what is important is that we have structures now and in the few years all is well.”