Football Association of Malawi (FAM) says the honeymoon is over and clubs that will not meet the club licensing requirements ahead of the 2022 season will be demoted to the second-tier leagues.
FAM licensing and compliance manager Casper Jangale said this in an interview yesterday after completing the Super League club licensing process on Sunday.
He said: “In the past we have been accused of treating clubs with kid gloves, but this time around, they will have to bear with us because we are not dancing to any tunes.
“It is time to walk the talk for the good of our game. If the situation will require that we have eight or 10 teams in the [TNM] Super League, so be it. But we are not moving an inch backwards.”
Jangale said having finalised the process, they will now meet Super League of Malawi (Sulom) to compile a report that will be submitted to the First Instant Body (FIB) for determination on who should be issued with licenses.
He said: “Clubs have submitted documents and we have also met them and inspected their facilities.
“After compiling the report, it will be submitted to the FIB which will meet this Saturday to do the needful.”
Jangale said the key areas that
are being prioritised this time around are sporting, which deals with youth development such as an Under-17 or Under-20 team that should compete in the First Capital Bank league, complete with a coach who has a minimum of FAM C licence.
“The second area is infrastructure, which involves training ground and official match venues and should have all the required necessities. Then, we have financial which covers the newly-introduced K3 million licensing fees and that clubs should not owe players a penny going into the new season,” he said.
Jangale reiterated that any club that fails to pay the licensing fees or has outstanding dues with players will not be considered for licensing by the FIB.
“We want all the clubs to start on a clean slate. That is how serious we are this time around,” he said.
Newcomers Rumphi United general secretary (GS) Shadrick Msowoya yesterday said they are optimistic of meeting all the requirements.
He said: “For now, I would say we are on track since the process is still ongoing, we should have a clear picture by this evening [last].”
Dedza Dynamos, who will also be making their debut season, said they are learning the process.
The club’s GS Mavuto Mugode said: “FAM officials came and inspected everything. We have been advised on areas we need to improve on.
“They will come again on March 3 to check on the progress we have made and we are optimistic that by that time, we’ll be ready.”
However, football analyst George Kaudza Masina doubts FAM’s threat that it will not register clubs that will not fulfil the club licensing requirements.
He said: “We have heard that jazz before. FAM and Sulom are just good at issuing ultimatums which, unfortunately, they hardly enforce.
“But being a new season, let us give them the benefit of doubt and see how serious they are this time around.