Malawi Under 17 national team coach Deklerck Msakakuona has shared his pain after Wednesday’s heartbreaking exit from the ongoing Cosafa Youth Championship which Malawi is hosting in Blantyre.
He said after his side bowed out of the competition following a 3-2 loss to favorites Zambia at Mpira Stadium in Chiwembe, Blantyre to end the team’s dreams of winning the tournament on home soil.
“It is painful to bow out of the tournament at this stage” said Msakakuona.
“I know Malawians are disappointed just like the players and the entire technical team but we should understand that such things happen in football. Football is unpredictable and sometimes you face things that you never expected” said Msakakuona.
However, Msakakuona hailed his boys for a spirited performance in all the three games they played in the competition.
Msakukuona admitted that one of the contributing factors that affected his plans was the expulsion of 12 of his players who failed Magnetic Resource Imaging (MRI) exrcise to verify their ages.
“We had a team in our mind which we built for a number of weeks and it was a blow for us sending 12 players back home after they failed MRI (Magnetic Resource Imaging)” he said.
During Wednesday match, Lasmond Phiri put Zambia in the lead six minutes into the game after he was set up by Rickison Ng’ambi beating Malawi goalkeeper Wongani Chinkonde.
Later in the 29th minute Malawi equalized through Frank Mahowa after Zambia defence failed to clear a long ball into the box. The first half ended one-all.
The Zambians restored their lead soon after recess through Moses Mulenga before Chikumbutso Salima again leveled the scores.
It was Zambia’s substitute Peter Chikola who broke the hearts of Malawi players and supporters in the 65th minute when he scored the winning goal straight from a corner kick.
Zambia coach Osward Mutapa thanked his charges for making it three out of three.
“It’s great victory. We made six changes. It’s not easy to win after making such changes. We are happy that they did well,” he said.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :