ALL the local players called for camp in readiness for next month’s Junior Africa Cup of Nations tournament in Lusaka have reported except for one, Football Association of Zambia deputy secretary general Lombe Chipupu has said.
Speaking in an interview with the Daily Nation sports in Lusaka, Chipupu said of the 23 local players summoned by Under-20 national team coach Beston Chambeshi, only Napsa Stars’ Enock Mwepu is yet to report due to family issues.
Chambeshi called most of the players that won the COSAFA in South Africa for Next month’s championship.
He however dropped goalkeeper Dominic Nzala and defender Moses Nyondo from the 25-member squad that is camped in Lusaka.
“All the local players who were called for camp have reported except for Enock Mwepu of Napsa Stars. Mwepu has not yet reported as he is attending to some family issues,” Chipupu said.
The squad consists of three foreign-based players and Chipupu disclosed that the association expects the duo of Kenneth Kalunga of Ikast FC in Denmark and Patson Daka who is in Austria to join the Junior Chipolopolo soon.
“All the foreign-based players are expected to join the rest of the squad members on Tuesday (today),” he said.
Chambeshi has also included four players from the Under-17 national team to beef up competition in the team as they prepare for the tournament.
Defender Boyd Mkandawire, who has featured for the senior national team in the recent past, has also been included in the team after he missed out on the COSAFA tournament due to injury.
The players who were dropped for the COSAFA tournament have also been summoned to join the squad and these are Leonard Mulenga, Boston Muchindu, Jonathan Daka, Obed Masumbuko, Tresford Mulenga, Stephen Chulu and Patrick Ngoma.
Zambia has been placed is in Group A of the 2017 junior championship alongside Egypt, Guinea and Mali and will qualify for the Under-20 World Cup slated for later this year if they top the group.