Women’s football pioneer Maggie Chombo is favourite to become the first female women’s football Malawi national team coach ahead of the 2018 Cosafa Championships in South Africa next month.
She tops the list of an all-female technical panel proposed for the job by the Football Association of Malawi (FAM) Technical Subcommittee and awaiting the executive committee’s approval this weekend.
This follows a Cosafa directive that members should encourage women to take a leading role in the sport.
Malawi has about 50 female coaches, but Chombo, Karen Chaula, Ellen Kamwana, Caroline Phiri and Clara Luhanga are the most active and make the grade.
Of these, Chombo, a CAF A licence-holder, is the most highly qualified and experienced.
She has been assistant coach to male national team coaches Temwa Msuku, Thom Nkorongo and recently, Stuart Mbolembole, who resigned last year.
The former national team captain also owns women’s football team side Blantyre Zero FC and Maggie Chombo Football Academy which participates in men’s FMB Under-20 League.
FAM general secretary Alfred Gunda confirmed that Chombo was among the proposed all-female coaches, but said the executive has the final say on who gets the job.
He said: “The technical subcommittee proposed the technical panel. It is the ex-co that makes the final decision,” he said.
There will be no rest for the new coach as she is expected to get down to business to prepare the team for the Cosafa Championship.
With just over three weeks before the start of the regional tournament, the new coach has a daunting task of getting ready the team which last played at the 2017 Cosafa Cup.
“Soon after the ex-co, the new coach and his technical panel will be unveiled and get down to business. There will be no rest for her,” he said.
FAM technical director John Kaputa said it was time to empower female coaches to take a leading role in women’s football.
“We have women who are highly qualified and experienced to lead the national team. This is their time,” he said.
Last year, Malawi was knocked out in group stages after finishing on third position.
They lost 3-6 to Zambia, beat Madagascar 6-3 and drew 3-3-against Zimbabwe.