- The Young Chipolopolo who were the favourites to win the final having beaten South Africa 1-0 in a group fixture before the final however qualified for the 2021 AFCON to be held in Morocco despite having missed out on the trophy.
By MICHAEL MIYOBA
THE Zambia Under-17 national Soccer team has failed to defend the COSAFA Men’s Under-17 Youth Championship after losing the final 4-2 on penalties to South Africa following a 1-1 draw at Gelvandale Stadium in Port Elizabeth, South Africa.
The Young Chipolopolo who were the favourites to win the final having beaten South Africa 1-0 in a group fixture before the final however qualified for the 2021 AFCON to be held in Morocco despite having missed out on the trophy.
The George Chilufya tutored charges had scored first in the 1-1 draw through Joseph Sabobo Banda who converted a penalty in the third minute of the match.
The lead was however cancelled out 13 minutes later when South Africa’s Thabang Mahlangu converted also from the spot to level the scores.
Defender Teddy Khumalo had committed a foul in the eighteen yard box which gifted South Africa a penalty.
The tightly contested final saw both teams creating some decent scoring chances which were not utilised in both halves as the game ended 1-1 to go straight into penalties.
Simthandile Sishi, Yamkale Phalane, Lyema Dopolo and Lindokuhle Mbutho converted for South Africa while Zambia scored through Julius Kumwenda and Charles Mumba.
Young Chipolopolo captain Miguel Chaiwa and Rickson Ng’ambi missed their spot kicks as South Africa were crowned under-17 Cosafa Champions, bagging a record third title.
Young Chipolopolo midfielder Julius Kumwenda won the player of the match award as Zambia collected Silver medals for finishing as runners up.
The Young Chipolopolo however dominated the awards, bagging the fair play award, goal keeper of the tournament and the top scorer award.
Goalkeeper Eric Makungu was voted Goal keeper of the tournament while Joseph Banda bagged the top scorer award with five goals.
Banda also won the sponsored trip to Spain where the Barcelona Academy player will go for trials alongside South Africa’s Mduduzi Shabalala who was voted player of the tournament at the Cosafa.