Former Civo United and Escom United Malawi national striker Noel Mkandawire has died after a long sickness at Mzimba District Hospital on Saturday.
Fondly known as Amfumu (King) in football circles Mkandawire died amid a concern on the welfare and plight of Malawian players who end up destitute after a glorious football career.
Mkandawire’s long time friend Elvis Kafoteka who is former Malawi national football team captain confirmed saying it happened while strenuous efforts were made to raise funds to meet his medical treatment expenses.
“His death is quite a shock to me because we tried to mobilise money to assist him and many things happened in a short period of time and I had hope that he will recover. It’s a shock to me,” Kafoteka said.
He said the soft spoken striker who let his goalscoring prowess did the talking was humble.
“Noel was a quiet person easy to talk to. He was jovial and loved songs especially pop sounds. He was humble.”
Kafoteka a fierce campaigner of players welfare said he recommended Escom United to sign him at the peak of his career among stiff competition from top clubs.
The deceased went on to inspire Escom United to win their first ever title in 2007 with his goals alongside Chiukepo Msowoya.
Mkandawire was a product of Coca-Cola schools competition while at Chayamba Secondary School and went on to play for Malawi’s flagship league outfit Civo United and then Escom United.
Born in 1978 Mkandawire died single some years after retiring from football.
The news of his death shocked the soccer fraternity filtered in as his former team Civil Sporting where he made his names were playing Blue Eagles in a Lilongwe derby.
This is the second high profile former player to die within two months after another Silver Strikers and World Cup Under 17 striker Tony Chitsulo’s death.