Zambia: Following repeated inquiries from prospective young players for junior national teams, the FAZ Media Team provides an elementary guide to how one may earn a spot. Often, FAZ platforms are inundated with a flurry of random requests for young players dreaming of donning national colours.
1. Identify yourself with an academy: Many young players who have made it to the junior national teams have been identified from academies across the country. National team selectors have usually kept tabs on academies where they scout for talents.
2. Know the location of your provincial office: FAZ is now fully decentralized, with all ten provinces having an office. Any player seeking to find where to start from can simply walk into the provincial office and make their case. All ten provinces have a network of FIFA youth coaching equipped coaches through the technical directorate that spearheads talent identification.
3. Visit your nearest Super League team: FAZ now mandates Super League teams for both men and women to run junior teams that compete in youth leagues recognized by FAZ. This is another window young talents may utilize for their talent.
4. Understand the role of the office of the technical directorate: The FAZ Technical Directorate is responsible for designing football development programmes, youth development, coaching education and achieving identified targets on and off the pitch. The department is in charge of implementing all activities related to technical development, as well as the control, monitoring and assessment. From time-to-time, the Technical Director visits the grassroots and Academies to appreciate potential and direct talent to possible nurturing points to release the fullest potential.
5. Value yourself at your true worth: Sometimes, the enthusiastic inquirers on FAZ platforms hardly have any traceable talent other than their Facebook zeal. Chances are that the talent scouts will find you if you are good. An honest assessment of one’s talent potential will save society stress and prospective talent some valuable time and bundles.
6. Know the school sports calendar: Many talents are spotted through the Zambia Secondary Schools Association calendar. This is the window mostly available for school-going children who are identified from inter-schools ball games.
7. Avoid age-cheating: A good number of players knocking through unconventional doors are already above the age threshold for the team they dream of playing for.
8. Contact the right office: Make it a point to get hold of the relevant officers whenever in doubt. On technical matters, the office of the Technical Director holds the key and has made sure to plant satellite offices in the provinces coordinated at the secretariat level.
9. Know the designations for national teams: Zambia currently has the under-15, u17, u20 and u23 national teams.