MATHEWS KABAMBA [Kitwe]
CHIPOLOPOLO striker Patson Daka cannot seem to get enough headlines with the latest highlight being winning the RB Salzburg player of the month for November after an impressive show.
It is the 21-year-old’s first player of the month recognition since moving to the Austrian club in 2017. The striker, who has also played for Green Buffaloes, Kafue Celtic, Power Dynamos and Austrian side Liefering on loan, saw off competition from defender Max Wöber, midfielder Zlatko Junuzovic and forward Hee-Chan Hwang. “@PatsonDaka20 is your Player of the Month for November!” the club posted on Twitter. Daka, who is on 15 goals in all club competitions this season, has managed to score six goals in nine games in call competitions for club and country in November. On Wednesday, he scored in his side’s 4-1 win over Belgium side Genk in the UEFA Champions League Group E match. With that win, it means RB Salzburg, who lost 4-3 to Liverpool earlier in the group stage, would need only a low-scoring single-goal victory to finish ahead of the European champions and reach the last 16. They are on seven points, three less than defending champions Liverpool and two behind Italian side Napoli.
The player of the month award for Daka comes despite Norwegian striker Erling Haaland, who has been linked with a move to Manchester United, becoming the first teenager to score in five consecutive European Cup or Champions League games when he did so against Genk on Wednesday.
Haaland, 19, got Salzburg’s fourth goal three minutes before the end of regulation time to take his tally to eight goals in this season’s Champions League. Daka scored the first for Salzburg, as well as his first in the Champions League, when he reacted quickest to a rebound in the 43rd minute. The other two goals were scored by Takumi Minamino and Hee-Chan, who tucked away a cross from Haaland.
Tanzania international Mbwana Samatta netted a consolation for Genk towards the end of the match. It was a goal to savour for Daka who dedicated it to his late father Naphtali.“I definitely dedicate this goal to my late dad. He always wanted me to live his dream and reach places he didn’t,” he said. “It makes me feel proud of myself. I have been waiting for this moment all my life and I thank God it came to pass. I believe this is the beginning of many more Champions League goals to come.
”Daka and Mwepu, who was also voted in the UEFA team of the week after providing two assists in Wednesday’s match, received some praise from Chipolopolo caretaker coach Aggrey Chiyangi. “I just want to give them [Daka and Mwepu] a word of encouragement for the good things that they’re doing and making Zambia proud, these [two] players are committed and disciplined,” Chiyangi said. “How I wish we had more of the players playing outside [the country] who can give us more of such.”