– Negotiate their way home at the Akwa Ibom International Airport
BY Pat PA Okon
Years back, former President Kenneth Kaunda had prophesied that one day, ‘Zambia Shall be free’. Yesterday, they secured the freedom and got spared the headache of facing A-rated teams like Brazil, Germany, Russia, Spain etc at 2018 World Cup when they bowed to the superior Super Eagles Nigerian team by a lone goal.
This morning while negotiating their way back home at the Ibom International Airport, Uyo, the Zambian coach, Wedson Nyirenda, confessed that his team, the Chipolopolo lost to Nigeria because the Eagles had superior experience.
The win sees Nigeria record 13 unassailable points from a possible 15 to qualify for the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia, six points adrift Zambia.
However, Nyirenda insisted he is proud of his team.
“We want to congratulate the people of Nigeria for qualifying for the World Cup. It was not an easy game, just like the first one.
“I think the game was a game of wits, like the first one because the difference was just a goal.
“We played the game dominating Nigeria, but with their experience, they got the needed goal from the half chance they created.
“We had so many injuries in the team, but inspite of that, we accounted for a good game and played very well. This is the best game in the qualifying series.
“Our objective has been to rebuild the team in a very short period of time. We had the nucleus of the team in short time. Very discipline and hardworking after one year,”
Zambia captain, Kennedy Mweene, has said he is proud of his team, despite the loss.
At the departure hall of the airport, there was a standstill due to heavy vehicular traffic as Akwa Ibomites in their hundreds looked beyond the win that sealed Nigeria’s passage to their third straight World Cup participation, and rolled out accolades as they bade the Zambians a safe journey back home.