Football Association of Malawi (FAM) technical subcommittee has asked the executive committee to negotiate with government on the possibility of hiring an expatriate coach for the Flames.
The subcommittee’s chairperson James Mwenda, who is also FAM vice-president, also confirmed in an interview yesterday that incumbent coach Ernest Mtawali’s contract will not be renewed after the expiry of the current deal at the end of next month.
“As we look forward to the rebuilding drive, we have proposed the recruitment of an expatriate on the understanding that the combined current package for the coach and assistant coach, would be enough to cater for an expatriate.
“But that will be subject to approval by the executive committee when it meets on August 1,” he said.
Mwenda also said the FAM technical body decided against renewing Mtawali’s contract on the basis that he lacked planning and managerial skills and, to some extent, discipline.
“It was established that he could not conduct postmortems with his backroom staff and he also sidelined his assistant [Nsanzurwimo] Ramadhan.”
Mwenda further said Ramadhan will be in charge of the Flames temporarily for their last 2017 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Swaziland in September because by then their contracts would have come to an end.
On the way forward, Mwenda said they have proposed formation of Under-17 and Under-20 national teams which should participate in continental and regional tournaments to ensure continuity and also play frequent international friendly matches against neighbouring countries..
“As for the senior team, it has been suggested that it should take part in the regional tournaments such as the Cosafa and Cecafa tournaments as well as the Championship of African Nations and the target is to build the team around players such as Gerald Phiri Jnr, [Frank] ‘Gabadinho’ Mhango, Limbikani Mzava, Atusaye Nyondo and Robin Ngalande who are still relatively young.
“These can now be blended with the likes of Isaac Kaliati, Stanley Sanudi, Rafiq Namwera, Dalitso Sailesi, Mieacle Gabeya and others.”
In a brief interview yesterday, Mtawali said he had no problems with FAM’s move.
“I respect their decision, I guess life has to go on. I only hope they will maintain the young players that I drafted into the team and blend them with the likes of Ngalande, Gerald, Gabadinho, Francis Mulimbika and Mzava,” he said.
However, seasoned tactician Yasin Osman said reverting to an expatriate coach is not a solution to the Flames woes.
“To me, it would appear they are just scratching the surface. Look at the support that goes towards the national team preparations. I will repeat that you cannot have a national team playing against a local team in preparation for an international match, added to that we do not have proper development structures in place such as the junior national teams.
“Even the standards of our local football live a lot to be desired. Our clubs do not even take part in international tournaments. My take is that FAM should have hired a panel of experienced coaches to oversee the rebuiding exercise and retain Ernest as U-20 coach. We have had many expatriate coaches before and with due respect, it was only Ted Powell who delivered,” he said.