Zambia head coach Wedson Nyirenda says his team will not slide into complacency after defeating Uganda 3-1 in their 2018 African Nations Championship (CHAN) Group B opening match played at the Stade de Marrakech on Sunday evening.
Man-of-the-match Lazarous Kambole scored the opener and set up Augustine Mulenga for the second goal before Fackson Kapumbu put the icing on the cake with a deflected free kick to give Zambia an edge in a match which was dominated by their opponents.
It was Derrick Nsibambi who got the consolation for Uganda.
Despite his side taking early leadership of the group – on goal difference from Namibia who defeated Ivory Coast via a lone goal – Nyirenda believes that all teams had an equal chance of progressing to the knock out stage.
“We won’t relax. We still have games to play against Namibia and Ivory Coast. The race is still open so we can’t go to sleep. Even Uganda can still qualify despite them losing the first game,” said Nyirenda.
“Uganda played well, were better organized and controlled the first half and could have gone up. But we showed character and didn’t concede. We played on the counter and that is how we got a goal which gave us some edge.
“For us, it is good that we have won the first game, because a positive result gives us impetus to do well in our next match,” he said.
Zambia face Ivory Coast at the same venue on Thursday, while their final group match with Namibia will be played in Casablanca four days later.