First Blood To Zambia

Zambia has claimed a 1-0 win away from home after beating Sudan at the Karima Stadium in the 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers preliminary round first leg on Wednesday.  It was a busy opening 10 minutes of the game for Zambian goalkeeper Kennedy Mweene as he was forced to come off his line to collect the ball twice.  There was a chance for the Sudanese in the opening minutes as the ball fell to Boya who directed his sharp header to the crossbar from close range.  This really should have been the first goal of the game.

Although the Zambians had been struggling to hold on to possession and the game was played mostly in their half, it was the visitors who were on the score board first.  There seemed to be a misunderstanding between goalkeeper Akram El Hadi and defender Ramadan Agab and Winston Kalengo found himself in the Falcons’ box before he delicately tapped the ball into the open net for the crucial first score.  Chipolopolo seemed to be playing on the edge as the hosts had an early chance in the opening minutes of the second half which forced Mamelodi Sundowns goalkeeper Mweene to make a superb save after Bakri Abdi El Khadir hit a powerful shot.

In the final 20 minutes of the game the home side was enjoying more ball possession but still could not seem to find an equaliser.  Six minutes of addition time was added and the north Africans were dominating the pace of the game.  A corner was awarded but Nathan Sinkala made a clearance and that was the final chance for the hosts.    

The southern Africans will be happy with the away win and will meet Sudan again In the second leg scheduled at Mwanawasa Stadium in Ndola on Sunday.