FAM has announced that the Flames foreign legion arrive today in the countdown toSaturday’s 2015 Africa Cup of Nations Group B qualifier against Algeria.
Football Association of Malawi (FAM) chief executive officer Suzgo Nyirenda on Sundayhinted all the nine foreign-based players that have been called up for the encounter have confirmed their arrival today.
The foreign contingent comprises captain Joseph Kamwendo (DR Congo), Robert Ng’ambi, Harry Nyirenda, Limbikani Mzava, Atusaye Nyondo, Robin Ngalande, Gabadinho Mhango (South Africa), Chiukepo Msowoya and Chimango Kayira (Mozambique).
“Unless something crops up, we expect all of them to arrive on Monday,” said Nyirenda.
In the meantime, Flames assistant coach Jack Chamangwana has admitted that despite some foreign-based players’ recent form slump, they still had to be given the benefit of the doubt for the Algeria game.
Chamangwana particularly singled out striker Gabadinho, who is struggling at both club and national level, as well as burly forward Msowoya.
“We know that questions have been raised as to why these players have been included when they are struggling both at club and national level.
“We do not just call these players. We analyse their most recent performance and Gabadinho and Chiukepo [Msowoya] were some of the names that were discussed at length,” he said.
There were also suggestions that leaving out Gabadinho for the time being would be a blessing in disguise as it would ease pressure on the 22-year-old star.
“But then, there were some crucial factors that had to be considered such as consistency of the playing squad, especially looking at the level that we have reached. We cannot afford to continue making changes anyhow. It is also not fair to drop a player based on performance in just one or two games,” said Chamangwana.
He further said it was agreed that the two players can still perform without necessarily scoring goals.
Chamangwana said the players that are struggling need counselling other than being given the cold shoulder.
“You look at Gaba, he is still young and he just needs to be spoken to other than being sidelined,” said Chamangwana.