Elias Pelembe confident Mozambique will qualify for 2025 AFCON

Elias Pelembe confident Mozambique will qualify for 2025 AFCON

UD Songo and Mozambique national team captain Elias Pelembe is hopeful The Mambas’ will qualify for a second successive Africa Cup of Nations, with the next edition set for Morocco in 2025.

Mozambique had only played in the AFCON in 1986, 1996, 1998 and 2010, before qualifying for the recently concluded 2023 edition in Côte d’Ivoire. 

Speaking to SABC Sport, Pelembe says the new crop of national team players are hard-working, which strengthens the team. 

"The chances are [high]. We need to work, and we already know this feeling [of qualifying] and we want to feel it again, so we're going to keep working as a team and as a group," said Peleme.

"Because we are not just a national team, we are a group, and that's why the team has been strong. We have so many young players, and they understand what the coach wants. So we're going to keep working. I hope we will be in the next AFCON."

Mozambique exited the 2023 AFCON at the group stages, after drawing against Ghana and Egypt and ultimately suffering a big loss to Cape Verde. 

Pelembe says, even though he was disappointed by their exit, he remains proud of the way they played. 

"I feel a little bit disappointed because I was expecting we could go through to the next round, even though our group was a very strong group," he added.

"But I had that hope, and it didn't happen, so there's a small frustration, but besides that we showed character, we showed in every game that we wanted to go through, and it didn't happen. We hope next AFCON [will be better]."

The road to Morocco will begin with the preliminary round this month, though Mozambique will not be partaking thanks to their exploits from the last edition, with the first round then set to follow in September.

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