Shitembi, Nyambe confident of qualification

Brave Warriors captain Petrus Shitembi is confident Namibia will qualify for the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) finals scheduled for Cameroon.

Speak soon after the team's victory of Chad in the opening match of Group A of the Afcon qualifiers, the nimble-footed Shitembi who has taken over the captaincy from retired skipper Ronald Katjijere said winning the first match was an important step for qualification.

It was a difficult match and we made it harder for ourselves than it was supposed to be. But collecting three points at home was the most important thing. We need to make our home ground a fortress. We need to collect as many points at home as we can, he said.

He added that the win was different from the previous campaign as they had started with a draw at home to Zambia.

Shitembi said it will tougher collecting points away from home hence the good start was necessary, adding that he was proud of the team.

His views were echoed by home debutant Rayne Nyambe who paid tribute to the fans who welcomed him with open arms.

I am very happy with the victory, I am happy to have played here, I enjoyed myself. The pitch made it a bit difficult, but I had to adapt. The mood and the spirit in camp is marvellous and we are looking forward to the next match, he said.

Head coach Bobby Samaria said the team did not play well in the first half as they failed to trouble Chad.

They closed their middle hence we started to play from the wide areas and we troubled them. Shitembi could not play the diagonal passes and through balls, so we had to change our approach, he said.

He added that Namibia is in a tough group which includes Guinea and Mali, hence the need to collect as many points as possible.

Samaria added that they are going to Conakry with the aim of forcing a result and snatching a win so as to maintain their top position on the log.

Chad coach Emmanuel Tregoat said Namibia is a good team with very technical players who made it difficult for his team.

I am not happy with my team because they could have played better. If you do not score a goal on the other end and you lose concertation and concede a goal, then you will have problems. My defence let me down today, he said.

Namibia beat Chad by 2-1 in the Group A Afcon 2021 qualifier at the Sam Nujoma Stadium on Wednesday evening.

They play Guinea next Sunday before resuming the qualifiers in August 2020.

Source: Namibia Press Agency