Women Football

Copper Queens player ratings as they tumble in Korea

Copper Queens starting lineup against South Korea for the international women's friendly April 2023

The Copper Queens were put to the sword in a seven-goal thriller as the girls succumbed to a 5-2 bashing by South Korea in their first competitive friendly match played in Seoul, South Korea.

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The Copper Queens were put to the sword in a seven-goal thriller as the girls succumbed to a 5-2 bashing by South Korea in their first competitive friendly match played in Seoul, South Korea.

It was a disjointed display by the Zambian girls preparing for the FIFA Women’s World Cup, and here is how they fared.

  1. Catherine Musonda 3/10

Catherine Musonda started ahead of Hazel Nali, and she stood horns erect in the first half before the second half came and she literally destroyed everything she built with her own hands. Poor judgment and a drained battery of concentration saw Korea score three cheap goals to come from behind.

  1. Martha Tembo 7/10

A nasty collision with a Korean forward left her shin bleeding in the first half, but the Terminator picked herself up and left every content of her lungs on the pitch. She found it difficult to advance in her signature overlaps due to the inexperienced counterparts she was paired with, but Martha was the only blue light of quality in the Zambian rear guard.

  1. Esther Siamfuko 5/10

When her nose was left bleeding profusely after throwing her face in the way of a flying shot in an attempt to block it, it looked all over for the little right back, but she carried on with the chest of a general. Her tireless output could never be appreciated until she was withdrawn, and Zambia conceded three goals. She still has a lot to learn, but the future looked bright.

  1. Agness Musesa 4/10

Paired with Pauline Zulu, Musesa looked switched off and sluggish. She cracked easily each time Korea attacked and failed to offer the needed mentorship to young Pauline.

  1. Pauline Zulu 4/10

Pauline looked solid and a real fortress in the making in the first half, but her endurance and stamina failed her as the game gained demand and intensity. She broke apart mentally and physically, and her failure to clear a rolling ball saw Zambia concede the fifth goal. She had a terrible debut.

  1. Ireen Lungu 2/10

Ireen was deep in the belly of complacency and comfort throughout the match. She didn’t want to sweat, she didn’t want to get dirty, she couldn’t attack, she couldn’t defend, and left the center backs exposed and prone to the sharp things the Korean attacks threw at Zambia. She was terrible.

  1. Grace Chanda 2/10

She had no impact whatsoever on the match. She was sub-optimal in every definition of the phrase.

  1. Susan Katongo 3/10

Like Grace Chanda, Susan Katongo looked too comfortable, and for the first time, we saw a Susan Katongo who totally forgot the weight of the shirt she wore. She was not willing to play, and her absence from the match cost Zambia heavily.

  1. Barbra Banda 8/10

The captain went great guns and gave her all for the team. Playing without a functioning midfield, she kept dropping deep to pick balls and push hard, looking for openings and spaces. She scored Zambia’s second goal and showed leadership throughout the match. She is a courageous, athletic, and versatile player who looked excited to lead the team to the world’s greatest stage.

10. Rachael  Kundanaji 9/10

She looked selfish with the ball but what else could she do when she was surrounded by teammates who were not willing to play. Kundananji scored Zambia’s equalizer and was a diesel engine that covered every breadth of grass. Strong, direct, and gifted with blistering pace, she was a handful for the South Korean defenders. Simply unstoppable hunger and desire to succeed.

11. Rachael Nachula 6/10

She kept switching on and off and had little and close to no positive impact on the match. Her positioning was poor and each time Zambia raced forward, she barely joined the attacking trident to give Zambia some numeric advantage.

1. Inonge Kaloustian 5/10

She was introduced 3 minutes before time and only had two touches on the ball. The first was impeccable but the second looked clumsy. She needs more minutes perhaps.


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