Malawi may be forced to pull out of qualifying for next year’s Africa Cup of Nations because they do not have the money to play their final two games as the Football Association of Malawi (FAM) has cancelled the national team’s training camp.
The Flames sit in third place in Group B, with matches against second-placed Mali and bottom side Ethiopia to come. Malawi are scheduled to host Mali on 15 November and travel to Ethiopia for their final match four days later.
FAM general secretary Suzgyo Nyirenda said the training camp “has been postponed until funding has been identified”, adding that government has said it will not provide funding.
“The decision by our main sponsor, the Malawi Government, not to provide financial resources for the previous fixture and remaining fixtures of the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations has left FAM with no option but to suspend camp training of the Malawi National Football Team to avoid incurring debts that FAM would not be able to settle,” Nyirenda explained.
“FAM would like to further note that in the event that funding is not identified, it will be compelled to withdraw the Malawi National Football Team from the on-going Africa Cup of Nations.”
He said FAM are trying to engage a number of organisations to give us US$155,000 (about K62 million) to complete the assignment.
Should they fail to raise the money required to play those games, they will be disqualified and their results removed from the table – which will significantly alter the standings.
Withdrawal from Afcon could earn FAM the wrath of Caf with sanctions including suspension from football activities for the next two years.
“It is pathetic we have reached this position. We are hopeful something will happen, but if the situation remains the same we will definitely have to pull out,” said Nyirenda.