By Adeboye Amosu:
Zambia head coach George Lwandamina has dismissed claims that his side's failure to qualify for the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations in Gabon is a sign that they don't have quality enough players that will face Nigeria and other teams in the race for the 2018 World Cup ticket, reports Completesportsnigeria.com.
The Chipolopolo ended their campaign with a 1-1 draw against Kenya at the Levy Nwanawasa Stadium on Sunday.
They finished in third position in Group E behind Guinea Bissau and Congo.
Next on the line for them is the clash against three-time African champions Nigeria next month.
"We have so many players and we have previously cast the net wide. But many are called, few are chosen," Lwandamina told fazfootball.com.
"This is the international scenario we are talking about. It is totally different from the local league.
"Some players may shine in the local league but for reasons best known to themselves they tend to be overshadowed when called to the national team.
"This is down to lack of exposure. Until we start exposing players to the international scenario we will keep facing the same challenge.
"This was close also the case with former coach Renard. He called almost 200 players but none of them played for the national team except for Mbola. The rest were players who were built way back, those are the players he used."