Kinnah warns inactive pros

Malawi national soccer team (Flames) coach Kinnah Phiri has staked the Flames ahead of the 2014 World Cup qualifier against Kenya, by warning some senior players that unless they find clubs, they will not be considered for the match.

Kinnah was referring to defender Elvis Kafoteka and strikers Russell Mwafilirwa and Esau Kanyenda, who are not playing at club level.

“I would urge them to find clubs now and be active or else they will not expect to be considered for the game against Kenya.

“I will only consider players that are active and doing well at their respective teams,” Kinnah said.

Kanyenda said last week that he is expected to travel to Vietnam for trials and is only waiting for a visa in South Africa.

“As soon as the visa is processed, I will depart for Vietnam where my agent [Alex Bondarenko] has organised trials for me; otherwise, I am training with my former team Jomo Cosmos here in South Africa to keep fit,” said Kanyenda.

Mwafulirwa, who is battling work permit delays in South Africa, hinted at the possibilities of returning to Europe.

“If it does not work out here, returning to Europe is the option, but I will give Cosmos the first option,” Mwafulirwa said.

Kinnah said while he was happy that Chiukepo Msowoya has returned to action after being reduced to a sideshow for almost a year, he is still worried that some of the foreign-based players such as captain Peter ‘Mjojo’ Mponda, Tawonga Chimodzi, Limbikani Mzava, Dave Banda, Harry Nyirenda and Moses Chavula are not playing regularly.

“It was a relief to see Chiukepo bouncing back to action and the fact that he and Robert Ng’ambi scored in that game [against Black Leopards] was even more encouraging.

“I only hope things will continue that way; otherwise; we do not have much time ahead of the game against Kenya,” said Kinnah.

Said Kinnah about his other key players: “I know that Santos are taking it easy on Mponda, but then the others such as Dave, Chavula and Tawonga have also not been playing; and Mzava is yet to be registered.

“This is the reason I proposed that we should start camp training with the local players early next month, so that we should not be caught off guard.”

Mponda, who was only being featured in Nedbank Cup games as a precautionary measure, was supposed to start against Moroka Swallows in a league game last night.

Chimodzi, Chavula and Banda have not played in the last two games for their respective teams.

The other South Africa-based players that are playing frequently are Ng’ambi, Atusaye Nyondo, Peter Wadabwa, Jimmy Zakazaka and Sankhani Mkandawire.

Spain-based striker Robin Ngalande is also enjoying game time at Atletico Madrid’s youth side.

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