Standard Bank Top 8 Knockout Cup champions Blue Eagles FC have said they should be allowed to defend the cup automatically; and not depend on voters.
The tournamentâ€™s rules stipulate that only six top teams in the previous Super League season have automatic qualification while two other teams must be voted for by fans.
Blue Eagles finished on eighth position last season, which means if they are to take part in the tournament, they have to be voted in by the fans.
“It will be proper for us to defend the cup automatically by virtue of being champions. It will not be proper to bank our participation on voters. Some teams by virtue of their history have larger fan bases than us. Our plea is to FAM and Standard Bank to consider us because this is a special case,” said Eagles general secretary Ackis Muwanga.
Standard Bank head of marketing Linda Kachingwe-Sisya said they will refer the issue to Football Association of Malawi (FAM) for their input.
“I think FAM will be able to handle that and give direction as to what should be done in this case,” she said.
FAM acknowledged that Eaglesâ€™ case needs special handling.
“We will sit down with the organising committee and table the issue to see how we can handle it. This, indeed, is a special case, but we will have to revisit the rules and regulations of the tournament and make a decision,” said FAM president Walter Nyamilandu.
The tournament, which will be launched on June 30, will be played from August to September.