Date: January 22nd 2015
Venue: Nuevo Estadio de Ebebiyín
City: Ebebiyín, Equatorial Guinea
Time: 18:00 (CAT)
Match Result: Zambia 1 – 2 Tunisia
Goal Scorers: 1 – 0, Emmanuel Mayuka 59’; 1 – 1, Ahmed Akaïchi 70’; 1 – 2, Yassine Chikhaoui 88’
The GSV Top Class Award
After watching an adventurous Zambian side fail to make their chances pay, one constant factor seemed to continuously pop up when one asked why Tunisia were still not down by a couple of goals; Aymen Mthlouthi was the stand out performer in a game where Tunisia’s defending was shown to be resilient even when they were underperforming and Zambia’s lack of unselfishness in offence harmed their chances more than it helped their performance. The GSV Top Class Award deservedly goes to a man who kept his side in the game when they were absorbing immense pressure and afforded them the platform to build a perfect foundation for an effective comeback. The Eagles of Carthage showed a great deal of determination to come back against a side that dominated them and should have put them away, yet they owe a great deal of debt to their stopper, the deserved winner of our GSV Top Class Award after pulling off a few good saves and marshalling a defence that didn’t always seem to have their heads in the game.
The GSV Class Clown Award
As we watched yet another Southern African side fail to capitalise on their chances and or show the game management ability to kill off a game and retain possession, it was heart wrenching to see the gaffer fail to recognise the magnitude of the situation and make effective changes in personnel and tactics to afford his side an opportunity to get a positive result out of an encounter they dominated for large periods. Mr. Janza’s lack of a Plan B in this tournament has been less than honourable, for the second game running, Chipolopolo seemed to tack the invention and drive required to go any further than the group stages of Africa’s greatest showpiece; Honour Janza seemed like a gaffer without an adequate grasp on his tactical approach and he lacked the expertise to alter things affectively when his side needed to secure the result, a managerial performance worthy of winning the GSV Class Clown Award on any given day. After a less than inspiring performance against the DR Congo, Janza again failed to motivate and adequately prepare his charges to make the most of their chances and play as a collective; for all those above stated reasons, and a few more unspeakable ones, Honour Janza is the winner of our GSV Class Clown Award.
The Grand Stand View
This was an encounter that desperately needed a winner after the opening rounds dished out a couple of draws, yet the neutrals wanted an entertaining game even more; the most amusing part of the entire game was watching a Chipolopolo attacking unit fail to play as a collective and somehow get away with it for the longest part of the game. Tunisia showed why they are still one of Africa’s most respected nations, even when they underperform, the Eagles of Carthage are still a hard unit to break down and they have retained that mastery of absorbing pressure for larger stanza’s in the game and hitting their opponents late with a flurry of well drilled attacks while they begin to tire. Zambia only have themselves to blame for not winning this encounter, or getting a draw out of it at the least; an avid Zambian football supporter we were fortunate to watch the game with summed up the sentiments of many Chipolopolo fans worldwide when he confessed after the final whistle was blown, “I feel like crying.”