Football Association of Malawi (FAM) says four Flames members, including two players, have tested positive for Covid-19, but the national football team’s training camp will go ahead.
The four were supposed to be part of the Malawi national football team squad which regrouped at Mpira Village in Chiwembe Township, Blantyre on Sunday in preparation for the Cosafa Cup and 2022 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) qualifiers.
A statement issued by the association yesterday, states that the identity of the four will not be disclosed for the sake of their privacy.
Reads part of the statement: “Further to this development, we wish to report that all the four cases were asymptomatic. They are currently in isolation being monitored by our medical team and [they] are recovering very well.
“It is expected that they will report for national duty once they test negative 10 days from the day when they tested positive in line with the Ministry of Health guidelines on Covid-19.
“As we embark on this critical journey of football restart, we wish to advise that safety of all concerned is our utmost priority and we will do everything possible to enforce strict health and sanity measures during football gatherings.”
FAM competitions and communication director Gomezgani Zakazaka yesterday said the development will not affect the Flames camping as the tests were done before the team went into camp.
He said after getting the greenlight from the Presidential Task Force on Covid-19 to proceed with the Flames’ camping, FAM undertook a precautionary measure to test all the selected local players, officials and secretariat members of staff that are directly involved in providing support service to the national team before the actual camping.
Meanwhile, Flames coach Meck Mwase yesterday said they will only be in a position to determine whether to call additional players once training starts.
“Today [yesterday] is about housekeeping issues such as medical tests and so on, but we should start our preparations in earnest tomorrow,” he said.
The Flames gaffer also said except for the two players that tested positive for Covid-19, the only player who was yet to report as of yesterday was midfielder Mecium Mhone.
“He has some issues to sort out at his home in Nkhata Bay, but we expect him to join us probably tomorrow or the other day,” said Mwase.
The Flames will face Burkina Faso’s Stallions back-to-back in November.
Mwase has included 11 foreign-based players in the squad.