Veteran Zambia commentator Dennis Liwewe has warned the Chipolopolo that over reliance on one player to steer the national team could lead to the downfall of the African Champions.
The African champions struggled to qualify to defend their African Cup of Nations title on Saturday as they needed the lottery of penalty kicks to eliminate Uganda without Jacob Mulenga and Rainford Kalaba
Zambia coach Herve Renard said that the absence Mulenga and Kalaba led to their 1-0 defeat to lowly Uganda before lady luck smiled on in shoot-out.
But the experienced commentator has hit out at the comment of the Frenchman all the players in the squad should be up to task even in the absence of some players.
“Never, never should we rely on one player for the team to perform,” Liwewe, the 76 year old, who has traveled with the Chipolopolo teams of yester-years throughout the world, stated told ZNBC.
“We have all the 23 players and they should all be able to perform; not because so and so did not play so we did not play well.
“We cannot be relying on one or two players,” Liwewe said in apparent reference to the absence of Jacob Mulenga and Rainford Kalaba during the 1-0 defeat to Uganda in Kampala.
Liwewe’s remarks come in light of the remarks by national team coach Herve Renard who was quoted in one of the daily tabloids stating that Zambia missed Kalaba.
“We missed Kalaba, we missed Jacob Mulenga, on a pitch like this. Rainford Kalaba is one best Zambian Player. You can ask any coach in Africa; they know Kalaba.
“When you are not playing with Rainford Kalaba like the quarter finals in 2010, it’s not good news, but the most important thing is to be strong”, said Renard.
Zambia scraped through to the finals of the Africa Cup of Nations to be held next year in South Africa after dispatching of Uganda via a penalty shoot out which ended 8 – 9 after the two teams ended level on aggregate.