By Rodwell Bwezani Mbewe
The purposed ZESCO UNITED decline after George Lwandamina departure is not inevitable if you see what ZESCO has done from 2004. They always seem to know what to do even when exchanging titles with ZANACO.
George won the 2014 and the 2015 league title with ZESCO and he was gunning for his third when things fell apart. But then putting the name of ZESCO among the best on the African continent in the year 2016 will be viewed as the best of all that I believe is the reason Africa saw him as a great coach hence attracting big clubs across the continent. Subsequent failures after exiting the CAF Champions league were not unavoidable nor foreseeable.
If you had asked me back after ZESCO beat sundown at Levy Mwanawasa 2-1 if you could have asked me , whether I could see ZESCO fail to win four games in a roll in the country , I would have said there was no chance.
But that’s what has happened drawing with ZANACO, losing to Nkwazi, drawing with GBFC and losing to Nkana I would have said there was no chance.
I could not see any future decline and am not seeing it bow after the departure of George Lwandamina because from what I have learnt the strength of ZESCO as a team is too well-established. Financially, the club is huge.The stadium is the biggest club ground in Zambia and that brings more motivation both to the players and the fans. It’s fun watching Club games in Levy Mwanawasa Stadium.
ZESCO will survive this storm because I think it is a well run club in this country and the team has so many winners, so many great characters and even with the departure of influential players like Cletus Chota Chama , I see them coming out strong and competing for everything in 2017.
Jacob Banda, Jesse Were , Kondwani Mutonga, Odiambo , even Mwape Mwelwa the humble player still have a lot to prove to keep ZESCO on top and sure to say with the right recruitment we would see the smooth phase from George Lwandamina to whoever is coming next. I believe the team still have that winning mentality.
Tenant Chembo takes over rhe team towards the end of the season and with one big final against ZANACO and in the past he struggled in the absence of George Lwandamina but that was because he knew he was standing in but now there is no one to call and all back stopping ends with him. A very good opportunity to impress your bosses and I think he will manage this one and this could be the rise of another coach in Zambia.
United are currently in fourth position in the league after a mixed last four games without a win for the first time in a long while. the team has already lost three games and that’s the maximum number of games they lost in defence of the title in 2015.
Next up for Tenant Chembo and his chargers after the George Lwandamina era is a home game to face Nchanga Rangers on Wednesday at Levy Mwanawasa stadium.
(The author of this article is an independent soccer analyst)