South Africa U-20 Men’s Football National Team Coach Thabo Senong says Zambia will be the favourites to win the on-going Africa Cup of Nations.
In a post match press conference after his side lost 1-0 to hosts Zambia, Senong said although his boys had lost, the tournament had proved a giant step for Cosafa countries having contributed two teams in the semi final brackets.
South Africa and Zambia are part of the four Fifa World Cup finalists from Africa joining Guinea and Senegal.
“I believe that they (Zambia) are the favourites. I even said when we came here in Lusaka that we want to prepare with the favourites, which Zambia is,” he said.
“We qualified to the World Cup because of preparing with this kind of opposition. I think they are the favourites to win the tournament but of course it is going to be very tough.”
Senong said the Southern African countries could be proud for having broken the traditionally West African dominance on the continent by putting up a balancing act the 2017 tournament.
“In general I am very proud of the progress of football in the Southern region. This tournament has been really a Cosafa tournament, we have just tried to balance the dominance that we always experience from our West African counterparts,” he said.
He added: “We wish them (Zambia) well in the final and I believe they have a chance to win.”
South Africa and Zambia will fly the Cosafa flag at the South Korea World Cup joining Guinea and Senegal.