The day Mbesuma cried like a baby

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In an exclusive from his base in Turkey, Mbesuma told Zambia’s Post newspaper that he was shocked when Phiri told him that he could not make the final team because of lack of fitness.

“I was shocked when the coach (Patrick Phiri) told me that I was dropped. I did not believe my ears, I could not hold back my tears,” Mbesuma, who plies his trade at Turkish team Bursaspor, said.

“I cried, I pleaded with the coach to just let me play one game but he refused.”

Phiri dropped Mbesuma in Tunisia on January 9, a day before the team list submission deadline, after Zambia's two friendly matches against the Carthage Eagles in Rades en route to the Ghana finals.

Mbesuma said he had not cried in a long time but the moment he was told that he was not on the final list, he wept like a child.

“Coach Phiri had taken away the most important thing of my life,” he said. “I did all I could to get to Tunisia and join the team, even if I had difficulties with my visa, I still made it. I was very stunned that I did not make it.”

Mbesuma said he has accepted the situation and was now working on shedding his weight to regain his form.

“I will look after myself well from now onward. I will watch what I eat so that I can get back in shape again and be the good striker that I am.”

Mbesuma said he is now fit and would start training with Bursaspor next week saying he could not wait to play again.

He expressed a strong desire to regain his full fitness and play in the upcoming joint 2010 Africa/World Cup qualifiers to be held in Angola and South Africa respectively.

Mbesuma begun his career at Roan United before moving to Chiefs and had stints in Europe with English team Portsmouth and Maritimo in Portugal before moving to Turkey.