Zesco United begin their last push for a respectable Group A finish when they host Premiero de Agosto in a bottom-two clash on Saturday.
The Zambia side face their Angolan visitors at Levy Mwanawasa Stadium in Ndola in a penultimate Group A match with both sides now clearly seeking a win to make a respectable finish to their continental campaign well aware that their mathematical hopes of a top two finish have all but faded.
Zesco and Agosto have two points from four games, five behind second placed Zamalek and an unassailable eight points adrift of leaders TP Mazembe, who have qualified to the quarterfinals.
But Zesco coach George Lwandamina is defiant despite overseeing the Zambian club’s worst group stage run in all league phase appearances after going four consecutive matches without a victory.
Football being what it is, you expect even the unexpected. We are still there, we are still playing although the chances have diminished, Lwandamina said.
But there is slight light at the end of the tunnel until we play the last two games. This is the hope we have noting that we still have two games and all the teams also have to play too.
We might just find there is some fire there or there is no fire at all-it is a two-way thing.
Zesco and Agosto drew 1-1 in the first leg meeting on November 30 on match-day-one in Luanda but the Zambian champions are winless at home against Angolan opposition with a modest two draws.
Their away record in Angola is also poor with two defeats and a draw.
Meanwhile, Zesco head into the match after snapping out of a four-match losing run in all competition in 2020 following a 2-1 league victory over Buildcon on January 22 to see them pick up their first points in the new year.
One game cannot give me hope because we still have so many games to play. Hopefully, this time around, we will be able to add another dimension to it, Lwandamina said.
But players must first believe that they are the ones who are supposed to change this scenario.
Zamalek will host Mazembe in the other Group A clash on Friday at the Al Salam Stadium in Cairo.
Source: Confederation Africaine de Football (CAF)