Recalled players seek lengthy Flames stay


Recalled foreign-based strikers Atusaye Nyondo, Chawanangwa Kawonga and Schumacher Kuwali are hoping to impress coach Ronny van Geneugden (RVG) who has called the for the first time since he took over.

After training for two days with the team, the duo conceded though that there is stiff competition as the team prepares for Saturday’s international friendly match against Lesotho’s Likuena at Bingu National Stadium this Saturday.

Back in the fold: From (L to R): Kuwali, Chiukepo Msowoya, Robin Ngalande, Kawonga and Nyondo

Speaking in an interview on Tuesday, Nyondo, who plays for South Africa Premier Soccer League (PSL) outfit Bloemfontein Celtic, said he was still young and capable of being with the Flames for a long time.

“My future with the Flames will depend on the coach. However, my wish is to be part of the team for a long time. What I will do is to work hard and impress the coach so that I can continue being called up,” he said.

Nyondo, who used to be a key member of the squad previously, further said that the competition in the team is stiff which has triggered a hard working spirit in training.

“The competition is so intense so much that if you relax you risk missing out. Everyone is fighting really hard and that is good for the team,” he said.

On his part, Mozambique-based Kawonga drew a difference between the current training sessions and those conducted by former coaches.

“In the past, focus was physical fitness and we spent much time jogging and doing physical exercises. This time it is more about playing football and tactics. I would love to play under this coach for a long time because he can help improve your tactical game,” Kawonga said.

He also concurred with Nyondo that competition was stiff but he was optimistic he can work hard enough to be part of the team on a long term.

On the other hand, Kuwali said it feels good to be back in the national team.

“The first step was to get the coach’s recognition and now I have to impress him.”

RVG has said he is impressed with the players he has called up for the first time.

“The first task was to blend the new boys into the team. This has worked because of the passion and dedication the players have shown. I am so impressed with their level of commitment,” he said.

Meanwhile, team manager James Sangala yesterday said the coach has since hinted that he will not drop any player in the countdown to Saturday’s match.

“He wants to have a bit more time to assess the players and thus, he would like to have them up to the last day,” he said. n

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