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LEOPARDS PUSH FOR CONTINENTAL FOOTBALL

PRISON Leopards coach Ishmael Balanga still believes his side will finish in the top four of the FAZ/MTN Super League and qualify for continental football.

And Green Eagles coach Aggrey Chiyangi is happy with his players’ attitude of never giving up after coming from two goals down to draw 2-2 against Prisons.

Leopards started on fire after winning promotion from the Eden University National Division One League when they led the Super League in the early stages under coach Mwenya Chipepo.

But they have had a rollercoaster campaign which has seen them drop to eighth position with 30 points after 22 points since Chipepo left to coach another promoted side Indeni FC of Ndola.

Speaking after his side gave away a 2-0 lead to draw 2-2 against Eagles in Choma on Saturday, the Congolese-born Balanga said drawing away at Eagles where most big teams have struggled felt like a win for him.

“Most of the big teams fail to beat this team here at home. It’s not easy to win here and you know we are from the lower division and to realise this performance I am so happy glad for my players,” he said. “They have shown how big they are for the moment and for my happiness is that we were on 29 points, so now we move to 30 points. One point away is like a win for me. So I am happy for that.”

He remained optimistic that his side would get a win against police outfit Nkwazi when they meet in Kabwe next week.

“So, it’s okay, I am not disappointed. I am so happy…hard work, determination, motivation. You see, our boss is here far away from his office, he is a very busy man but he is here. That is the motivation the player is expecting, it is one of the secrets the team is performing,” said Balanga. “We have more than 13 games, so I am telling you we will finish between the top four and qualify for the continental. I am telling you, keep this and come back at the end of the season, you will realise.”

Meanwhile, Chiyangi said: “I am happy because we managed to fight back and equalise even though this is not our best result. We wanted to win this game.”

In other games played on Saturday, Lusaka Dynamos continued to push their quest for continental football next season drawing 1-1 against Kabwe Warriors.

This keeps the ‘elite’ side in fourth position on the table while bottom placed Kitwe United continued their winless run this season after losing to 10th placed Nkwazi 1-0.

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