Ahead of Angola’s first game at the TotalEnergies CHAN 2022 against Mali, head coach Pedro Gonçalves wants his side to approach the event with the belief that they can go all the way to the final on February 4.
Palancas Negras are a team that are rebuilding with a couple of youthful faces as well as elderly players who are anticipated to give guidance at the competition organized for players that feature in the domestic league.
Angola reached the CHAN 2011 final losing 3- 0 to eventual winners Tunisia in Sudan and indeed though it’s further than a decade agone, Gonçalves has espoused from that performance to motivate the current team.
“We’ve a fine balance in the team. For us, it’s important that we do well. What we wish to do and what we can do, there’s a big gap but I can say that we’re positive ahead of our first game against Mali. A lot has changed since 2011 but we’re encouraged by that performance,” explained Gonçalves.
The former Angola U17 trainer who qualified them to their first ever FIFA U17 World Cup in Brazil in 2019 wants to write further history with this side in Algeria.
Indeed though he’s without striker Ambrosini Salvador Zine who was in Brazil and present in the CHAN 2022 qualifiers but lately inked for Greek side AEK Athens, Gonçalves will be looking to other options outspoken including Laurindo Dilson Maria Aurelio generally known as Depu and Joao Diogo a.k.a Julinho.
“We’ve other players that are veritably good and estimated each bone. We’ve a great platoon then in Algeria and want to do a good job at the event. We had some great friendly games in Portugal against brigades from there and Switzerland, and we shall apply what we learnt about the platoon at the event.”
Angola captain Herenilson Caifalo do Carmo echoed that, “We’ve a veritably good team that’s solid. We want to be winners. Everyone thinks the same way. We’ve to take it one challenge at a time. We’re coming out with the spirit of winners. ”
Angolan football has been on the rise in recent times and the qualification of both Sagrada Esperança and Petro du Luanda in the CAF titleholders ’ League group stages last season with Petro reaching the semifinals, the prospects is high from the suckers back home.
For Gonçalves and Herenilson, it’s a chance to continue erecting on that success.