Copper Queens Aim to Dim Scorchers AWCON Dream
The Zambia Women National Team face Malawi for the second time in seven days (today) looking for a win to close out a 1-1 first leg result and advance to the second round of the Africa Women Cup of Nations qualifiers.
While the Copper Queens got a crucial away goal in Lilongwe last Wednesday, they cannot afford to take this one lightly as they will need to close the game in front of the home supporters at Nkoloma stadium.
Coach Bruce Mwape has hinted there may be changes to the side that played out to a 1-1 draw in the first round first leg match, but said all the players were ready to represent Zambia and give the country another Independence Day present.
Mwape has Hazel Nali, Ng’ambo Musole and Catherine Musonda fit and ready to fight for the number one spot and good news for him is that defender Lushomo Mweemba has shaken off her injury and is ready to take her place in central defence.
Agness Musesa or birthday queen Patricia Lampi will partner Mweemba while defenders Margaret Belemu and Martha Tembo are expected to take their right-back and left-back positions respectively. Margaret Mulenga is also available on the right.
In midfield, Mwape is likely to go for youth and experience in Under-20 skipper Susan Evarine Katongo, Elizabeth Mupeso, Milika Limwanya, Mary Wilombe or Lubasi Pumulo.
In attack, Mwape has Spain-based forward Rachael Kundananji to deploy alongside skipper Grace Chanda and towering striker Ochumba Oseke Lubanji.
Maylan Mulenga and Xiomara Mapepa are the other striking options.
Malawi are expected to name a starting XI similar to the one that played out to a 1-1 draw in Lilongwe, with Ruth Mhango in goal, Patricia Nyirenda and Chimwemwe forming part of their backline supported by Madyina Nguluwe in midfield.
Scorer of last week’s equalizer, Sabinah Thom is a sure starter in attack supported by Jessie Yosefe and Fazila Chembekezo.
The winner of this aggregate match will face Namibia in the second and final round of the 2022 AWCON qualifiers. CAF has allowed 2,000 spectators with charges pegged at K30 and K50 for open wing and grandstand respectively. Kickoff is at 15:00 hours.