ZAMBIA: Will They Reach The Olympics’ Knockout Stage?

Zambia will face the Canarinhas in the final group game after losing the opener and drawing the second match.

In a recent interview, Andrew Kamanga, the president of the Football Association of Zambia, said that he’s convinced that the national team will show their talent against Brazil in Tuesday’s Olympic Games match.

Zambia have already played The Netherlands, losing 10-3 against the European Champions, and China, in which they dramatically got a point in a 4-4 draw against their Asian rivals; a point that keeps them very alive in the race to reach the next stage of the tournament.

“As the Copper Queens take on Brazil in the final group game on Tuesday, we have no doubt that they will be able to showcase their talent to the rest of the world,” Kamanga said as was quoted by Faz media.

“Their chase for a quarterfinal place is still within reach and we will be rooting for them. I implore everyone to keep supporting our women’s team as they fly our flag higher. We have no doubt they will represent the continent well.”

The official praised the national team for how they played the previous games and particularly mentioned captain Barbra Banda, who has set the competition alight with consecutive hat-tricks. Kamanga said:

“While any loss in football may be disappointing, we still take our hats off to the Olympic debutants, led by Banda, who has hit headlines with her scoring exploits. Barbara has scored two hat-tricks which have seen her break multiple records.”

Zambia's Barbra Banda nets another hat-trick in Tokyo 2020 thriller against  China - Women's Olympic football round-up | Football News | Sky Sports
Striker Barbra Banda (second right) netted her second successive hat-trick as Zambia drew 4-4 with China in a thrilling Tokyo 2020 encounter.

“She became the first African female footballer to score a hat-trick at the Olympics and improved on that record on Saturday with another that saw her become the first player to score two consecutive hat-tricks at the Olympics.

“The is only other female footballer to score two hat-tricks scored them in two different tournaments. We are proud of her and the entire team that has courageously flown the African flag high.

“They fought bravely against the Dutch team that is ranked fourth in the world and the Chinese team that stands 15th in the global charts. We have no doubt that arising from this exposure, many of our girls will be spotted by scouts in various top leagues.”


In the meantime, Kamanga is also hopeful that the recent launch of the Women’s Super League in Zambia and in the Cosafa region will help strengthen the clubs and players and, in particular, grow women’s football in Africa and around the globe.

“With the structures that we are putting in place, I believe that this experience will be a turning point in the development of the women’s game. We recently launched a Faz Women’s Super League that will help give more talented girls an opportunity to play regular football.”

“With Cosafa introducing a Women’s Champions League, it opens the doors for our clubs to also showcase their talent beyond our borders. CAF has also lined up an inaugural Women’s Champions League which is in tandem with our hopes of growing our women’s game to higher levels,” he concluded.

Zambia are Africa’s only women’s football representatives at the Tokyo Olympics Games, so it will be nice if Banda and the Copper Queens are able to give a good fight against Brazil; and who knows, their effort might be rewarded.

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