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Photo: Transfermarkt

Who is Zito Luvumbo?

Zito Luvumbo is the new big hope of Angolan football. Zito is working hard to get rid of this shortcoming and make Angola proud of him.

Luvumbo was born in Luanda in 2002, and joined 1° de Agosto in 2014. After a long and fruitful path through the club’s youth system, he made his first appearances with the senior team in the 2018/19 season, instantly turning heads with a goal against Cuando Cubango on his Girabola debut and winning the league a few days later.

His bid for the title of Angola’s next big thing was officially launched in the national cup final versus Desportivo da Huíla. He deserves much of the credit for a 2-1 win, having scored on 59 minutes and creating the penalty that was converted by Ary Papel four minutes later.

The 2019/20 campaign, although cancelled because of COVID-19, provided Zito the chance to establish himself in senior football, and he paid back the trust of coach Dragan Jović with a fair number of goals and good performances.

The series of impressive displays at the Under-17 World Cup in 2019 served as Luvumbo’s departure gift to the youth national side, coming after his debut with the senior Angolan team in September 2019 versus Gambia.

Style of Play Zito Luvumbo

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Photo: Kick442.com



  • Quality first touches

  • Dribbling on the counter and against set defensive blocks


  • Tactically naive

  • Too keen to dribble when better options might be available

The position where Luvumbo feels more comfortable, and the one where he crafted his lightning-quick rise to the pinnacle of Angolan football, is on the right wing.

There, he can maraud the flank with great aplomb, never failing to put his physical brilliance at the service of technical skill and creativity.

The thing immediately catching the eye of the onlookers is the quickness of both his feet and his brain. The young Angolan gives the impression of always knowing what to do way before the ball reaches his boots, often resulting in mouth-watering first touches which leave defenders in the dust.

Right after that, his runs are typically bound for the byline, with occasional detours aimed at getting into the penalty area to try a shot with his left foot.

What is most striking about Luvumbo is his enormous self-confidence, which makes him uncatchable when dribbling at full speed.

He is never afraid of trying to take on two or three opponents in quick succession, and this attitude often bears fruit, helping the talented winger create numerical superiority in the attacking half.

1° de Agosto took full advantage of this, not just in counter-attacks but also when building up more slowly. In almost any situation with the ball at his feet, Luvumbo is able to unsettle his marker, winning fouls and forcing the referee to brandish yellow cards on a regular basis.

Talking of his dribbling skills, Luvumbo has a wide repertoire of feints and tricks in his arsenal. His quick changes of pace and direction, paired with a minute, nimble physique are very aesthetically pleasing.

With no blasphemy intended, his dribbling style can resemble that of Lionel Messi; the way the Angolan moves his body in anticipation of receiving the ball, with the aim of creating a directional advantage before touching it, the composure with which he breezes past opponents and his pursuit of spectacular nutmegs really are somewhat reminiscent of La Pulga.

Besides his ball-carrying ability, Luvumbo’s passing game is also good, even if he does not possess an exceptionally wide array of passes.

Defensively, his high work rate allows him to retrieve quite a few balls, mostly in the attacking third.

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Photo: Sports Poets Society - blogger

Acute readers have certainly noticed how most of Luvumbo’s strong points have to do with technical and physical qualities.

This brings us to Luvumbo's main downside, namely the fact he does not look completely accomplished under the tactical point of view as of yet.

This is most patent every time he gives the impression to be waiting for the ball to be at his feet before turning on his magnificent engine; sometimes, this stillness crucially deprives his teammates of an option other than serving him right where he is.

When he finally receives the ball, he still looks way too in love with it, and often indulges dribbles with his head down, in a stubborn and almost obsessive quest for the byline, no matter how many defenders are there in between him and his object of desire.

Generally speaking, he is a very useful player in a tactical plan aimed at creating goal-scoring chances, especially against a team who has parked the proverbial bus. On the other hand, at this stae of his career, he’s way less suitable for many of the tasks when having to control the game – perhaps even harmful when the team need to slow down and protect the scoreline, according to scoutedftbl.


Even considering the sins of youth he needs to do away with, Luvumbo is an exciting young player, with great potential and a very strong attitude.

“He’s a quiet guy, who works hard every single day,” remarked Angolan journalist Avelino Kiala in a recent interview.

“Despite his age, he has complete control over his emotions and just loves a challenge.”

It is also because of these personality traits that so many big clubs showed interest in him.

The list is long, ranging from Manchester City to West Ham, Boavista, Anderlecht and even Flamengo, among others.

The young winger went as far as to have a trial with Manchester United in 2019 but, in the end, it was Serie A outfit Cagliari that had him pen down a five-year deal in September 2020.

As far as the national team is concerned, he can be quite confident about his spot in the squad.

Last year, Pedro Gonçalves was appointed head coach and the Portuguese knows Luvumbo very well, having coached him in Angola's under-17 team; nor is he afraid to bet on young players, as proved by Pablo Cambuta, Maestro, Domingos Andrade and the rest of the group of 15-year-olds he debuted at under-17 level.

Moreover, Gonçalves heavily relies on a 4-2-3-1 scheme with wide wingers, perfect for the Serie A newboy.

In Italy, his aggressive and very vertical idea of football could prove either a blessing or a curse for the young winger.

Transfer History

Season Date Left Joined MV Fee
20/21 Sep 23, 2020 CD 1º de Agosto Angola 1º de Agosto Cagliari Calcio Italy Cagliari Calcio - €1.00m
18/19 May 1, 2019 CD 1º de Agosto U20 Angola 1º Agosto U20 CD 1º de Agosto Angola 1º de Agosto - -
Total transfer fees : €1.00m
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