“We are going to South Africa to defend our trophy with the same motivation and determination as we did when we first won it in Gabon,” African champion coach Herve Renard has said.

Speaking exclusively to fazfootball.com, Renard said he was looking forward to a great tournament when the 29th edition of Africa's biggest soccer fiesta gets underway in Johannesburg next week.

"We are going to the Africa Cup finals to do our best. Our mission is to defend our trophy with the same motivation and determination," Renard said adding: "And we believe that with the support we will get from thousands of our fans who will travel, we will have a great tournament," The Fox said.

Zambia has made South Africa its 'home training base'. Thousands of Zambians are expected to trek south for the finals running from January 19 to February 10.

Chipolopolo commence the defence of her title with a January 21 fixture against Ethiopia before taking on Nigeria on the 25th and complete Group C business against Burkina Faso on the 29th.

The reigning kings of African football will play all their group matches at Mbombela and winning Group C would see Zambia stay in Mbombela for both the quarter-finals and semifinals.

Chipolopolo take on Norway Saturday 12th January at the Levy Mwanawasa in a final warm up match. Zambia has warmed up with games against Angola and Morocco since commencing preparations for Afcon 2013.