Chipolopolo coach Milutin Sredojevic will be looking to restore Zambia’s wounded pride when he leads his lads to battle at National Heroes Stadium in an unusual 21:00 hours kickoff.
Micho will be banking on the red-hot pair of Red Bull Salzburg Patson Daka and Enock Mwepu whose exploits in Austria keep linking them to possible big money moves.
The Zambian side has also blended in experience with the multiple CAF Champions League winner Kabaso Chongo who will captain the side roped in alongside 2012 Africa Cup of Nations winner Nathan Sinkala.
Some of the players expected to step to the challenge are Augustine Mulenga, Roderick Kabwe and Lubambo Musonda.
Chipolopolo may benefit from the absence of top European stars like Manchester City’s Riyad Mahrez, Ismael Bennacer and
Sofiane Feghouli, Islam Slimani, Nice’s Youcef Atal and Ramy Bensebaini.
Algeria have already secured their place in next year’s finals, but that doesn’t mean they won’t take this match seriously.
Zambia have a challenge on their hands. Worst case scenario, a draw to keep their qualifying hopes alive.
The Algerians top the group on 10 points with Zimbabwe second on five while Botswana has four with Zambia stuck at the bottom with zero points.
In 15 meetings between the sides, Zambia have won only four games against Algeria, and lost twice as many.
Their last clash ended in a win for the Desert Foxes, who thrashed the Chipolopolo 5-0 at home.
Kickoff is at 21:00 hours and the game will be played without spectators.
ZNBC will televise the game live.