When Uganda line up against Zambia on January 23 at the fourth edition of the African Nation of Championship (Chan), the Chipolopolo will be led by a man who led Zambia to their only Africa Cup of Nations in 2012, Christopher Katongo.
The same man who led Zambia and scored the winner against Uganda at the 2013 Afcon qualifiers in Ndola before the Cranes were knocked out 9-8 on penalties after a 1-1 all draw on aggregate.
According to www.supersport.com, Katongo received a surprise recall to the Chan team before Christmas together with Isaac Chansa, another veteran from the 2015 Zambian team that triumphed in Equatorial Guinea and Gabon.
The management of the team believes the duo will blend well with the youthful side as the Southern Africa side seeks better fortunes since the inaugural tournament in 2009 where they finished third.
Speaking to the football website, Zambia’s national team manager Lusekelo Kamwambi confirmed Katongo’s status on the team.
It goes without saying; Mr Christopher Katongo will have to assume the hierarchy
The striker who has scored 21 goals in 86 outings with the national team has not played for Zambia since October, 2014 in a 0-0 away draw against Niger in a 2015 Africa Cup qualifier.
Chansa who has managed just one goal in 61 games for the national team has also not played for Zambia since the 4-3 friendly loss to Japan in Florida in June, 2014.
Katongo and a few senior players were axed from the team during the reign of Honour Janza.
It’s not clear if his return will see him back into the senior Chipolopolo engagements as Kamwanbi declined to comment on the subject.
I think let as deal with that one when we cross that bridge
Both Katongo and Chansa are eligible to play at the Chan after the former signed for Green Buffaloes in July whom he helped win the 2015 Barclays Cup.
Chansa on the other hand has been at Zanaco for the last two seasons that was punctuated by a brief spell at Indian club North East United from August to December 2014.
AFRICAN NATIONS CHAMPIONSHIP
When: January 16 – February 6
Group A: Rwanda, Ivory Coast, Morocco, Gabon
Group B: DRC, Ethiopia, Cameroon, Angola
Group C: Tunisia, Guinea, Niger, Nigeria
Group D: Zimbabwe, Zambia, Uganda, Mali
Opening group fixtures
Saturday, 16 January 2016
Rwanda vs Ivory Coast (Amahoro Stadium, 15:00)
Gabon vs Morocco (Amahoro Stadium, 18:00)
Sunday, 17 January 2016
DR Congo vs Ethiopia (Huye Stadium, 15:00)
Angola vs Cameroon (Huye Stadium, 18:00)
Monday, 18 January 2016
Tunisia vs Guinea (Kigali Regional Stadium, 15:00)
Nigeria vs Niger (Kigali Regional Stadium, 18:00)
Tuesday, 19 January 2016
Zimbabwe vs Zambia (Rubavu Stadium, 15:00)
Mali vs Uganda (Rubavu Stadium, 18:00)