CAF CONFEDERATION CUP
Zesco coach touts himself for Premier Soccer League
In a humorous but perhaps not-so-veiled hint that is on a par with the “show me the money” line of Cuba Gooding Jr’s character in Jerry Maguire‚ Zesco United coach George Lwandamina has said he would welcome a job in the Premier Soccer League (PSL).
Lwandamina‚ the 55-year-old 1980s Zambia international‚ was the architect of Zesco’s run to the 2016 Caf Champions League semifinals‚ where they lost to tournament winners Mamelodi Sundowns.
This past fortnight – having left Zesco in November 2017 and returned in April 2018 – he has now also been the architect of Kaizer Chiefs’ exit from the Caf Confederation Cup‚ with a 5-2 aggregate victory completed by Saturday night’s 2-1 secondleg win at FNB Stadium.
The big man nicknamed “Chicken” has impressed with the sharpness and tactical astuteness of Zesco in his two stints in the past four years.
Lwandamina was asked if, like former Zambia international and national coach Wedson Nyirenda‚ at Baroka FC, he might consider a job in the PSL.
“Ja‚ there are jobs here. If it [were offered] I would take it up‚” Lwandamina responded.
He explained Zesco’s counterattacking strategy – which was absorbing as Chiefs pressed for the two goals they needed to reduce a 3-1 deficit from the first leg‚ and hitting on the break – that was so effective against Amakhosi in the second leg.
“We knew that our friends have experienced and very fast players. So we just divided the team into two units – six to do the defensive one‚ the other four to do the attack‚” the coach said.
“We knew they would leave spaces behind because they wanted this game so much. And they did. And the chances that we created we were able to put away,” he said.
Lwandamina displayed his wit and sense of humour at the post-match media conference to his team’s second-leg win against Chiefs.
He was asked about his targets for the remainder of the Confed‚ where Zesco are into the group stage and drawn in group C with Sudan’s Al-Hilal‚ Asante Kotoko of Ghana and fellow Zambian club Nkana FC.
“Those are mine‚ and I will keep them‚” he said‚ his grin readily available. Zesco’s win against Chiefs is more impressive given they are still in their preseason and have only kicked a ball in competitive matches in the Confed for the past three months.
Zambia’s Super League kicks off on January 27.