Football Association of Malawi (FAM) has missed the September deadline it set with the Flames kit manufacturers Umbro to have the first consignment of the replica jerseys sold out.
The football governing body ordered 5 000 replicas last October and was supposed to have all sold by September 30.
Confirming the development in an interview on Wednesday, FAM general secretary Suzgo Nyirenda feared that failure to beat the deadline will delay the shipment of the second consignment.
“The agreement is that the delivery of new replicas would only be made if we manage to sell almost all the jerseys we ordered last year,” he explained.
The development also means that the national team will be forced to continue wearing the same kit as manufacturers cannot supply the newly designed ones.
The FAM GS said, so far, they have sold 4 000 pieces while expressing hope that the remaining replicas will be sold in the next two months.
“We have 1 000 jerseys that remain, but we are optimistic that by the end of this year, they will all be gone,” he said.
He attributed the poor sales to economic challenges which the country is experiencing.
“We all know that we are in tough economic times which have seen most Malawians focusing their spending on other essential commodities,” Nyirenda said.
Meanwhile, the soccer governing body’s GS is hopeful that the sales will soar during Flames upcoming 2017 Africa Cup of Nations and 2018 Fifa World Cup qualifying matches.
“The jerseys sell much when we have such crucial matches and we hope that the trend will continue, especially when the national team plays at home,” Nyirenda stated.
Last year, sports gear manufacturers Puma cancelled a Flames kit deal because FAM was failing to market its replicas.
Asked if he feared the same reaction from Umbro, Nyirenda said the UK-based company understands the challenges FAM is facing to market the replicas.