Zambia Women’s Football Team – Women’s World Cup 2023

Zambia Women's Football Team

The Zambia women’s national football team, also known as the Shepolopolo, is the national team representing Zambia in women’s soccer. The team is overseen by the Football Association of Zambia (FAZ) and has made significant strides in recent years.

The Shepolopolo was formed in 1983 but only became affiliated with the Confederation of African Football (CAF) in 1985. Despite being one of the oldest women’s teams in Africa, the Shepolopolo struggled to make an impact in international competition until the 2010s.

Zambia Women’s Football Team

Zambia Women's Football Team
Zambia Women’s Football Team

In 2018, the team won the COSAFA Women’s Championship, their first-ever major trophy. They went on to qualify for the 2018 African Women’s Cup of Nations and finished fourth, their best performance in the tournament to date.

The Shepolopolo continued to impress in 2019, winning the Four-Nation Invitational Tournament in Zambia and finishing second at the COSAFA Women’s Championship. They also qualified for their first-ever FIFA Women’s World Cup, which was set to take place in 2020 but was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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One of the key players for the Shepolopolo is forward Barbara Banda, who plays professionally for Shanghai Shengli in China. Banda was the top scorer at the 2018 COSAFA Women’s Championship and was named the Confederation of African Football Women’s Player of the Year in 2020.

Another notable player is goalkeeper Hazel Nali, who plays for Green Buffaloes FC in Zambia. Nali was named the best goalkeeper at the 2019 COSAFA Women’s Championship and was also a key player in the team’s successful World Cup qualifying campaign.

The Shepolopolo are coached by Bruce Mwape, who took over in 2018. Mwape has been praised for his work with the team and has helped them to achieve their recent successes.

Despite their recent achievements, the Shepolopolo still face challenges. Women’s football in Zambia has traditionally been overlooked in favor of men’s football, and the team has struggled with funding and support. However, their recent successes have helped to raise the profile of women’s football in Zambia and have inspired a new generation of female footballers.

In conclusion, the Zambia women’s national football team, the Shepolopolo, has made significant progress in recent years, winning their first major trophy and qualifying for their first-ever FIFA Women’s World Cup. With talented players like Barbara Banda and Hazel Nali and the guidance of coach Bruce Mwape, the future looks bright for women’s football in Zambia.

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