Tuesday Oct 12, 2021. 12:03
Beston Chambeshi gave a vague evaluation of why he stuck to three inactive goalkeepers including the curious case of having just one defensive midfielder during the October FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 qualifier doubleheader date against Equatorial Guinea.
Chipolopolo lost 2-0 away against Equatorial Guinea on October 7 and drew 1-1 at home in Lusaka on October 10 to see Zambia’s Qatar 2022 dreams end on 4 points from four games with two matches to spare with no hope of overtaking Tunisia who lead on 10 points.
Goalkeepers Mwenya Chibwe, Gregory Sanjase and Lameck Siame have all not played any competitive domestic action for their respective clubs since the 2021/2022 calendar kicked off in August.
Sanjase, who recently moved to Zesco United from demoted Young Green Eagles as second choice to Ian Otieno, last kept fort in July at the 2021 COSAFA Cup in South Africa.
Siame also made an off-season move in September after joining Zanaco as a likely third choice from Kabwe Warriors.
“I think one day I have to invite my goalkeeper trainer to answer that question…definitely the door is still open for others,” Chambeshi said.
“It depends on the games in front of us but for sure we will look into the market if we need that striker to come in or need that defender to come in.
“The door is open, we need players that can add value to the team, we need players who can help the nation so the door is not closed.”
Meanwhile, Chambeshi had to scramble at the last minute to summon Zanaco midfielder Kelvin Kapumbu for Sunday’s final leg date against Equatorial Guinean after Dickson Chapa was suspended for that match.
Chapa missed the October 10 game after collecting his second yellow card of the qualifiers in the first leg loss to Equatorial Guinea three days earlier in Malabo.
“On Chapa, I think we had some options and we had that confidence. But you know, the time frame was short and we received the message of the suspension late,” Chambeshi said.
“It is nice the league is now on and that is why we had to fall back on Kelvin Kapumbu to come and join us.
“He has been at the national team for some time and I think you guys have seen him playing. It is not the first time he has come to the national team. That’s why we called him.”
But Kapumbu arrived in camp 24 hours after featuring for 88 minutes in Zanaco’s 1-0 home win over Nkana in Lusaka.
Kapumbu then started from the bench on Sunday and only came on in the 77th minute for Emmanuel Banda, the attacking midfielder who was converted into that defensive role.
Interestingly, Chambeshi had towering defender Isaac Shamujompa for both legs against Equatorial Guinea.
Shamujompa has regularly played as a defensive midfielder during his three years at Buildcon before his recent off-season move to Zanaco.