Super League entrants Evirom from the South, Mponela United from the Centre and Super Eagles from the North are not leaving anything to chance in their quest to survive in the top-flight league.
The four clubs have embarked on financial projects to enable them to take care of their players and fulfil fixtures.
“History has shown that some good teams with exceptional players have failed to survive in the top league because of lack of finances which resulted in low morale among players. We want to guard against that,” said Evirom chairperson Emmanuel Viola.
He said they have since bought a 26-seater minibus which they will be hiring out to earn money for player’s salaries and bonuses.
“Not only that but we are also investing K500 0000 (about $1 250) into a clubhouse where beer among other items will be sold to sustain operations of the team. This is on top of the financial assistance the team gets from Evirom Company. We have looked at all angles,” said Viola.
Currently, Evirom players get K1 500 (about $3.75) per game bonus and receive K8 000 (about $20) as monthly upkeep allowance. But Viola said the game bonus and the monthly upkeep allowance will now be adjusted upwards to be in line with their new Super League status.
Mponela United, who depend on five businesspersons based at Mponela Trading Centre for their financial needs, say they have been assured of continued support.
“We have committed sponsors who have the welfare of players at heart. Honourable Jean Kalirani has also promised to assist the team financially. She is excited by our success and the fact that we have made history for being the first team from Dowa to play Super League football. We are safe financially and we believe we’ll stay in the league,” said coach Benjamin Kumwenda who doubles as the team’s general secretary.
He said while playing in the Chipiku Central Region Football League (CRFL), the team used to make a fortune through gate collections.
“We have a fenced ground where we used to make between K400 000 (about $1 000) and K500 000 (about $1 250) a game. But we know we cannot host Super League teams at the venue. We plan to use the Bill Clinton Foundation Stadium at Nambuma which seats 20 000. We might be able to use it in four months’ time,” said Kumwenda.
While Mponela and Evirom have viable projects to take care of expenses, the situation looks gloomy for Mzuzu-based Super Eagles who have four directors.
One of the directors Steve Kachimanga said they did not find problems financing the team in the Simama Premier League.
“In the Premier League, the budget was slightly over K1 million (about $2 700). This is far less than what is required for a Super League budget. We do not have a viable business for the club. This time we need help both from the corporate world and individuals,” he said.
“We have written letters to prominent people within Mzuzu City who we believe can help us. Only when we get responses from them can we make a statement if we are going to participate in the league. But we are optimistic. This team represents all people from Mzuzu,” said Kachimanga.
He said they have a great young squad that has the potential to stay in the league for many seasons if given financial support.