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Goal explains why the Chipolopolo player should see the continental tournament as a chance to get his faltering career back on track

It’s fair to say Lazarous Kambole has had something of a slow start to his Kaizer Chiefs career.

The striker signed from Zambian giants Zesco United prior to the start of the 2019/20 campaign, but Amakhosi are yet to see the best of him.

Kambole was given plenty of opportunities to impress in the Premier Soccer League (PSL) last season by then-Chiefs head coach Ernst Middendorp.

However, the Zambia international struggled to adapt to his new surroundings and the speed of the game in the PSL.

Lazarous Kambole of Kaizer Chiefs August 2020

The man nicknamed Lazi made 17 appearances across all competitions and he netted once, in the 1-1 draw against Stellenbosch in August 2020.

Lazi breathed a sigh of relief after scoring his maiden goal in South African football and he started the following match against Mamelodi Sundowns as Chiefs pushed for the PSL title.

However, Kambole failed to grab the opportunity as he was substituted during the half-time break and Amakhosi went on to succumb to a 1-0 defeat to Sundowns.

Some Chiefs fans began doubting whether Kambole was still the same player who grabbed headlines across the African continent after breaking a Caf Champions League record in 2018. 

Lazi scored a hat-trick in five minutes in a Champions League match against Eswatini giants Mbabane Swallows at Mavuso Sports Centre in Manzini.

Caf later confirmed the former Kabundi Young Stars player’s hat-trick as the fastest recorded in the history of Africa’s most prestigious club tournament.

Willard Katsande, Kaizer Chiefs & Lazarus Kambole, Zesco United, January 2019

Kambole went on to finish second in the race for the Champions League Golden Boot award having hit the back of the net seven times in the competition.

Lazi was also very influential in helping Zesco reach the group stage and he is now back in the tournament with a different club, Chiefs. 

The Lusaka-born player has found game-time hard to come by under Chiefs coach Gavin Hunt thus far this season, having made three appearances across all competitions without scoring.

However, Hunt did show some faith in Kambole in the Champions League preliminary round first-leg match against Cameroonian side PWD Bamenda last month. 

The former Konkola Mine Police player helped the team secure a 1-0 win in Limbe and it remains Chiefs’ last win across all competitions.

Lazarous Kambole, Kaizer Chiefs, November 2020

Amakhosi will now take on Angolan giants CD Primeiro de Agosto in the Champions League first-round, first-leg match at FNB on Wednesday.

Kambole is most likely to be given another chance by Hunt with Leonardo Castro under-performing, which sees the team winless in six PSL games. 

The Colombian centre-forward has failed to score in his last six competitive matches and Hunt could look to Kambole, who is a proven goalscorer on the continent. 

Kambole should see this as a golden opportunity to impress the veteran coach and cement his place in the starting line-up which would be the perfect platform for him to finally establish himself a key player at Chiefs. 

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December 22, 2020
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