Chipolopolo this afternoon lost, drew, won, drew again before winning 4-3 in a grueling World Cup encounter against Germany.
Zambia rebounded to ensure their 2017 FIFA U20 World Cup ambitions were taken seriously after eliminating Germany in the last 16 of the tournament in a dramatic extra-time contest in Jeju.
The 2017 U20 AFCON champions came from behind twice to stun 1981 World champions Germany 4-3 at their lucky base in Jeju where they departed with a 100 percent record from three games played there.
Zesco United defender Shemmy Mayembe’s goal in the 30th minutes of extra-time, after a 3-3 full-time draw, sent Zambia through to their debut FIFA U20 World Cup quarterfinals.
It was a massive relief for coach Beston Chambeshi after Zambia lost 1-0 to Costa Rica in their final Group C match on May 27 but still advanced as pool winners to book their last 16 date with Germany.
But Zambia earned that quarterfinal ticket the hard way after Philipp Ochs fired-in superb free-kick in the 37th minute to see Germany take a 1-0 halftime lead.
Emmanuel Banda equalized in the 49th minute, Fashion Sakala then put Zambia ahead in the 68th minute to score his third of the tournament.
Enokc Mwepu made it 3-0 in the 86th minute… but the drama did not end there.
Germany then hit back with two late goals from Suat Serdar in the 89th minute and Jonas Arweiler 5 seconds before the end of stoppage time to force matters to be decided in the 30 minutes of extra time.
Mayembe put the result beyond doubt with a fine shot in the 107th minute to score his debut international goal.
Zambia now await Thursday’s winner between 2013 champions France or Italy in the June 5 quarterfinal to be played in Suwon.
Zambia’s quarterfinal qualification comes in their third World Cup outing after making group stage exit in 1999 in Nigeria and a last 16 placing at the Canada 2007 event.