The Africa Cup of Nations reigning champions Zambia opened their campaign today with the promise of a cash bonus from their country’s president if they made the final and a 4.5 times that bonus if they bring the trophy home again.
Unfortunately for the Zambians they started slowly and could only manage a 1-1 draw against 10-man Ethiopia in their opening match.
President Michael Sata visited the team at their training camp in Nelspruit and issued a goodwill message to the team, ahead of the finals, saying: “I have never doubted your passion for the game, courage to overcome and desire to be champions. I know your determination to win and I believe in your abilities.”
It was reported in the Zambia Daily Mail that the players will each receive $20,000 if they get to the final and $90,000 if they retain the cup.
The players each received $59,000 each for winning the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations.
Zambia face Nigeria and Burkina Faso in their remaining Group games.