Zambia U-20 national team coach Beston Chambeshi says goalkeeper Mangani Banda played a crucial role in the 1-0 win over Guinea.
A 48th minute goal from Patson Daka at the Heroes National Stadium in Lusaka on Sunday proved to be the winner as Zambia opened their 2017 U-20 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) campaign with maximum points.
Banda though also played a very important part, making two particularly brilliant saves to ensure a clean sheet for the hosts.
Chambeshi was pleased with the overall effort his side put in, and paid special mention to Banda.
“It’s a great start to the competition against a serious and tactically successful opponent,” he said.
“The important thing is the three points that allows the team to advance and prepare in the best conditions.
“It’s a collective victory [but] I want pay tribute to the goalkeeper [Mangani Banda] who saved two situations.
“I am impressed by the maturity of my players who did not bow to the pressure.”
Next up for Zambia is a clash with Mali on Wednesday, before they end their Group A campaign by taking on Egypt. Mali and Egypt played to a 0-0 draw in their opener.
South Africa lead Group B after a Luther Singh hat-trick earned them a 3-1 victory over Cameroon. Senegal and Sudan drew 1-1 in the other match.
The top four teams will qualify for the 2017 FIFA U-20 World Cup in South Korea.