Thursday Aug 31, 2017. 11:00
Algeria have the ability to defeat Zambia both home and away in their upcoming 2018 World Cup qualifiers, according to coach Lucas Alcaraz.
The teams will meet in back-to-back Group B encounters in Lusaka and Constantine on Saturday and Tuesday respectively.
The North Africans, who have appeared at the last two World Cup tournaments in 2010 and 2014, find themselves at the bottom of the log, five points off the pace set by leaders Nigeria.
They’ll need to pull off something special against Chipolopolo to give themselves a chance of reaching Russia 2018, but Spanish coach Alcaraz reckons they have a great chance.
"I think we have the means to win in Lusaka and Constantine three days later, but we will have to prove it on the field,” the Algeria coach said in a press conference on Wednesday.
“The group is aware of the task ahead. We are currently preparing with desire to go global and try to preserve our chances to win these two crucial games against Zambia.”
He added, "We are approaching these two games with five points less than the leader of the group, and it is a decisive turning point, we must not make any calculations, but victory is imperative.”
The Fennec Foxes boss admits that managing the workload of training, travel and playing two games just three days apart is tough, but he is prepared for the difficulties which lie ahead.
“To play two intense games in three days is difficult, we cannot do anything about this situation, we have to adapt,” explained Alcaraz.
“I have to allow players to recover and use as many players as possible in these two meetings so as not to make them fatigued.”