Red Arrows Are The Champions of ABSA Cup 2024

Red Arrows Football Club emerged as the champions of the 2024 ABSA Cup, triumphing over Kabwe Warriors with a 2-1 victory at National Heroes Stadium on Sunday afternoon, May 12th, 2024. This match marked a significant achievement for the Red Arrows, highlighting their dominant performance throughout the season.
Heading into the final, Red Arrows were the clear favorites to win. Their performance in the ongoing MTN Super League has been exceptional, needing only one point from their remaining four games to clinch the league title. This impressive form set high expectations for the team. Kabwe Warriors, however, were not to be underestimated. They had shown excellent form in their recent games, especially throughout the ABSA Cup tournament, starting strong from the preliminary stages and proving to be formidable opponents.
The match started with an explosive pace as Red Arrows took the lead in the second minute. Ricky Banda scored the opening goal, capitalizing on a precise cross from Ackim Mumba. The early goal electrified the stadium, filling Red Arrows' fans with excitement and confidence.
Despite this early setback, Kabwe Warriors were not intimidated. They responded with determination, creating numerous opportunities to score. However, their finishing lacked precision, and they couldn't convert their chances into goals. As the Warriors pressed forward in search of an equalizer, Red Arrows seized another opportunity in the 42nd minute. Alassane Diarra, assisted again by Ackim Mumba, doubled the lead for Red Arrows. Diarra's goal was a crucial moment, giving his team a comfortable lead just before halftime.
The second half began with Kabwe Warriors showing renewed vigor and determination. They appeared more aggressive and intent on overturning the deficit. This intensity put Red Arrows under significant pressure, causing them to play more defensively as they sought to protect their lead.
In the 52nd minute, Kabwe Warriors' efforts paid off when Godfrey Binga scored, reducing the deficit to 2-1. This goal galvanized the Warriors and their fans, making it seem likely that they might equalize or even take the lead. The match became highly entertaining, with both teams displaying remarkable skill and tenacity. The packed stadium buzzed with excitement as the Warriors continued to attack fiercely.
Despite Kabwe Warriors' relentless pressure, Red Arrows managed to hold onto their lead. The match concluded with a 2-1 victory for Red Arrows, who celebrated their hard-earned win. Kabwe Warriors' defender Killian Kanguluma was named Man of the Match for his outstanding performance, despite his team's loss.
Red Arrows' midfielder Alassane Diarra was named the best player of the 2024 ABSA Cup, a testament to his significant contribution throughout the tournament and particularly in the final, where he scored the crucial second goal. Diarra has been a key player for the MTN Super League leaders since his return, and his performance in the ABSA Cup final solidified his reputation.
Ricky Banda, whose goal in the opening seconds set the tone for the match, finished the tournament with four goals, earning him the Golden Boot Award. This accolade was presented during the award ceremony, which was attended by President and FAZ patron Hakainde Hichilema.
Even though Nchanga Rangers did not reach the final, their goalkeeper, Victor Chabu, was awarded the Golden Glove Award for his exceptional performances throughout the tournament, including two Man of the Match honors en route to the semi-finals
The financial rewards for the tournament were substantial. Each award carried a K25,000 prize. For winning the ABSA Cup, Red Arrows received K800,000, while Kabwe Warriors were awarded K350,000 for their runner-up finish. Additionally, Killian Kanguluma received the Finals’ Player of the Match Award for his exceptional display.
The 2024 ABSA Cup final was a thrilling match that showcased the skill and determination of both teams. Red Arrows' victory was a testament to their excellence and consistency throughout the season. As they celebrate their ABSA Cup triumph, they also look forward to potentially securing the MTN Super League title, underscoring a remarkable season for the team.

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Published: 05/17/2024