Zesco in last chance saloon

Zesco United are in last chance saloon on Saturday when they travel to Swaziland to face Mbabane Swallows in a penultimate Group D match.

The Zambian champions sit bottom of Group D with a paltry two points from four games, two behind third placed Swallows.

Leaders Etoile du Sahel of Tunisia and second place Primeiro de Agosto of Angola have ten and five points respectively with the former already qualified with two games to spare.

A draw or defeat for Zesco ends their interest and will see them fail to qualify to the knockout round for the first time.

But Coach George Lwandamina has refused to throw in the towel insisting Zesco will go down fighting.

The Ndola-based side also head into the match under pressure of playing their second successive away game following a 2-1 away loss against Primeiro de Agosto last month in Luanda in a match they squandered a one-nil 67th minute lead to let the hosts score two dramatic stoppage time goals to snatch the three points.

Moreover, Zesco also threw away another 65th minute lead against Swallows in the first leg in May at home to finish 1-1 after conceding another goal.

Striker Lazarus Kambole, their top scorer on three goals, including midfielders John Chingandu and Lameck Banda, will again be critical in the attack as Zesco chase their first Group D win.

However, it has been a frustrating campaign so far for Kenya striker Jesse Were whose drought in the competition persists.

Meanwhile, Zesco will be without defenders Simon Silwimba due to suspension and David Owino due to injury.

Shemmy Mayembe has come in for Silwamba while Solomon Sakala could start in place of Owino who has a though strain.

It is an opportunity for others but such is life. When others are not there others will have to take up the challenge and take the team forward," Lwandamina said.

Etoile will host Primeiro de Agosto in the other Group D match in Sousse.

Fixtures

Group A

17.08.2018 19H00 Tunis Esperance (Tunisia) vs Al Ahly (Egypt)

18.08.2018 13H00 Kampala KCCA (Uganda) vs Rollers (Botswana)

Group B

17.08.2018 19H00 Setif ES Setif (Algeria) vs TP Mazembe (DR Congo)

18.08.2018 19H00 El Jadidi Difaa El Jadidi (Morocco) vs MC Alger (Algeria)

Group C

17.08.2018 16H00 Conakry Horoya (Guinea) vs AS Port (Togo)

17.08.2018 19H00 Casablanca Wydad (Morocco) vs Sundowns (South Africa)

Group D

18.08.2018 13H00 Manzini Swallows (Swaziland) vs Zesco (Zambia)

18.08.2018 19H00 Sousse Etoile (Tunisia) vs Primeiro de Agosto (Angola)

Source: Confederation Africaine de Football

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