It’s been a while since the Flames made us smile with a good performance at the Cosafa tournament when they brought back the Plate and we thought that since we haven’t lifted this cup since it was inaugurated in 1997 maybe the next shot would the next one — all to nought.
In those days the Flames could easily shrug off teams like Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Mauritius, Madagascar and could match strength to strength with the regional giants like Zimbabwe, Zambia, South Africa and Mozambique.
But today it seems the Flames have slid so behind that the likes of Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Mauritius and Madagascar find us very easy prey.
The loss to Mauritius yesterday was so devastating to fans more so because they could have won it if they had been more creative.
Commenting on Facebook, Andrew Cane Chilapondwa said he wouldn’t blame coach Ronny van Geneugden but rather the players themselves for playing without purpose.
He added that all is not lost because the team can still bounce back by winning against Botswana as long as the players up their game.
Dyson Kondeni Musa observed that the players lack confidence by making too many passes like trying to get rid of the ball to avoid making mistakes — a sign that they lack football brains. (“Timasowa nzeru za mpira“) as he put it.
Many times, the Flames would initiate an attack with good passes but the moment they are cornered by good defence, they send the ball back and so on. We lack creative midfielders and attackers.
This brings to me an argument I’ve always come up with that our football needs more internarional exposure right from club level. Countries like Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Mauritius and Madagascar invested heavily in the future of their national teams through their clubs participating in the Confederation of African Football (CAF) club championships — the Champions League and the Confederations Cup.
Mighty Wanderers and Masters Security registered for the two tournaments for year’s editions but performed miserably because of lack of exposure. I don’t know if any of Malawian teams shall try a shot at either of the two tournaments.
The first thing we ought to do is to change our league calendar, that it should be syncronised with the rest of the African leagues.
I am saying this because by the time the CAF registration period is opened, we are halfway through our league and the only team that can afford to register confidently is the one that has won a national trophy in between to go for the Confederations Cup.
Our teams need to plan for participation than rushing in at the 11th hour like they do. Once the teams register in good time, they can start looking for sponsorship.
Teams can also consider to plan in participating in these tournaments well in advance whether they believe they can win the league or not. If they fail to qualify, they can reserve their resources for the following year and so on.
If our clubs do not participate in these club tournaments, our players will never gain any international exposure needed for the Flames.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :