After watching back-to-back final training sessions, of the Cranes and the Chipolopolo, the latter’s assistant tactician Jackson Mayanja reckoned that “we have to work hard’ to leave the Levy Mwanawasa hopeful. Forget the shooting then run in the wing, deliver a poor cross then go back to your hotel room until tomorrow.

Herve Renard’s side can pass, with a purpose, shoot with an aim and cross with accuracy, on the natural turf of the stadium. Trust Uganda footballers on a good pitch, they will always play like wounded lions and the atmosphere has never been a deciding factor away from home, especially lately.
That is not what Uganda has that Zambia don’t, Bobby Williamson’s side is driven by self belief, over confidence and the hunger to disprove critics. It is that self believe that got them a point against Angola in the 2014 World Cup first round qualifier.
The same belief handed the side a late draw against 2002 World Cup quarter finalist, Senegal. Over turning a 3-1, score line against Congo Brazzaville and beat the side 4-0 in Uganda was a sign of side that never losses hope.
It is because of that 5-3 aggregate that the Cranes made a date with the Chipolopolo on Saturday. “We have come to win, get a good result and wait for the return leg in Uganda,” Cranes skipper Andrew Mwesigwa assured the Zambian Media on arrival at Ndola airport.
“We Ugandans respect them (Chipolopolo) but do not fear them, being champions does not mean you have to win all the time. A time comes when that ends, tomorrow (Saturday) might be that day! Who knows?”  Who knows maybe that poise, the overconfidence will be the deciding factor after 90 minutes! Good luck to the Cranes.

E-mail:, @clive412 on twitter

Senior staff writer at Kawowo Sports mainly covering volleyball, football and badminton

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