FAM appoints Kaputa as Malawi caretaker coach

The Football Association of Malawi (FAM) has appointed its Technical Director, John Kaputa, to lead the dormant and coach-less Flames during next month’s friendly international match.

The soccer governing body announced over the weekend the Flames would play an international friendly against the Warriors of Zimbabwe at the Kamuzu Stadium in Blantyre on January 3, 2013.

FAM General Secretary, Suzgo Nyirenda, said Kaputa had been appointed as caretaker coach to take charge of the team only against Zimbabwe in the absence of a permanent coach.

Flames have been without coach since the expiry of a  short-term contract with Belgian expatriate, Tom Santfiet, who took over from a caretaker coaching panel led by Eddington Ng’onamo.

Kaputa: Acting coach

Kaputa: Acting coach

Nyirenda said the friendly would keep the players, mostly locals, in shape in the run-up to next year’s football calendar.

“Certainly we need to keep our team ready and fit for any eventualities, you never know any competition can come in between, particularly we’re looking at the COSAFA Cup,” Nyirenda said.

“Most of the times what we do is to use local players but unfortunately we miss the CHAN tournament [Africa Cup of Nations tournament for locally based players] where I feel we could use most of the local players. This is their opportunity,” he said.

However, the FAM CEO also hinted that during the Zimbabwe friendly some Flames’ stars playing in Mozambique, including DRC based Joseph Kamwendo, may also be featured.

“We need to expose more local players but I know there are some players from Mozambique who are currently in the country and they may also be tried.”

Nyirenda said the cash-strapped soccer body would shoulder the costs for the temporary coaches and the friendly match in the wake of government’s fatigue to fund the association’s programmes.

The Flames have not had a game since last September when they were painfully booted out of the 2014 World Cup after losing 0-2 to the Super Eagles of Nigeria.

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