Sunday Dec 19, 2021. 18:00
Struggling big guns Zesco United and Zanaco shared the spoils at Sunset Stadium in Lusaka on Sunday in their FAZ Super League Week 17 encounter that pitted last season’s top-two finishers.
The match saw nine-time champions Zesco make a modest recovery from their 2-1 loss to Red Arrows in midweek in what has been a stuttering start to their FAZ Super League title defence.
Zesco had the first chance to take the lead in the 7th minute through striker Jesse Were but his effort from the edge of the box was tipped over by Zanaco goalkeeper Charles Lawu.
But it was the seven-time champions Zanaco who took the lead in the 30th minute through defender Christopher Mhango.
Mhango slotted in the opener on the rebound after Zesco goalkeeper Ian Otieno parried the ball into his path after keeping out a breathtaking long-range shot from Roderick Kabwe.
Zesco replied in the 42nd minute when defender Samson Mkandawire whipped in a fine free-kick that took a bounce in the box before eluding Lawu and later shook the back of Zanaco’s net.
Otieno was Zesco’s hero in the 80th minute when he bravely stole the ball from the feet of rampaging Abraham Sinakombo.
Zesco are up one place to fifth on 25 points after sixteen games with a match in hand and are five points behind leaders Green Buffaloes.
Last season’s runners-up Zanaco are 12th on 19 points with two games in hand after clearing four out of their six-match back-long over the last ten days winning one, drawing two and suffering one defeat.
Meanwhile, second placed Green Eagles blew away a one-nil lead to finish 1-1 away against mid-table side Forest Rangers in Ndola.
Hosea Silwimba put Eagles ahead in the 54th minute to score his 6th goal of the season.
But an own-goal from Eagles defender Boniface Sunzu in the 78th minute handed Forest an early Christmas present as they head into the two-week mid-season break.
Eagles have 28 points, and together with Buffaloes, are the only FAZ Super League clubs to have so far confirmed their 2022 ABSA Cup at the midway top six cut off point.
Forest are ninth on 24 points after failing to qualify for the ABSA Cup for a third successive time.