The Football Association of Malawi (FAM) has put its foot down that unlicensed clubs and players will be barred from the TNM Super League starting next season—a resolve which teams say is not practical.
FAM commercial manager Casper Jangale, who also specialises in licensing players and clubs, disclosed this on Wednesday following a recent preliminary meeting with the Super League of Malawi (Sulom).
“We cannot use our clubs’ financial struggles as an excuse. We would rather start implementing the basics as Fifa and CAF are on our necks. Unlicensed clubs and players will not be allowed from next season. We have agreed with Sulom to be talking the same language,” Jangale explained.
The Confederation of African Football (CAF) and Fifa have instructed all-member associations, including FAM, to enforce the club and player licensing measures which mandate a club to be registered, have bank accounts, start-up capital for a season, training ground and secretariat.
Players will undergo mandatory medicals and also sign club contracts whose copies will be submitted to FAM before issuing licences. For clubs, FAM’s inspectors will verify if training grounds and other requirements are met.
Sulom general secretary Williams Banda yesterday confirmed that while the new measures, which are drawn from the undermined 2009 Lilongwe Declaration, will be implemented starting from next season, FAM and Sulom have homework to do.
“We need gradual transformation. The meeting was between FAM and Sulom secretariats, but we now need to take the matter to our executive committees. There were other assignments which we have not concluded. Besides, we have not concluded the 2013 season, so it will be premature,” Banda explained yesterday.
But with clubs such as Mighty Wanderers, Big Bullets and Epac lacking official corporate sponsors, Epac owner Dini Josaya Banda yesterday doubted the practicality of the licensing calls.
“Implementation depends on economic environment. It becomes difficult to implement such resolutions when our big clubs such as Bullets and Wanderers have no sponsors. This might be mere talk. If they are under pressure, FAM and Sulom must court government on the need for tax incentives to companies that would sponsor clubs,” said Josaya Banda.
CAF was from yesterday holding club licensing and professionalism workshop in South Africa involving 37 clubs drawn across the continent to “equip participants with the requisite knowledge and information about club licensing and the tenets of the fast-growing professionalism in football.”
Topics to be discussed at the seminar, the first of its kind, include professional development of clubs: “Managerial and finance. Infrastructural development of clubs and stadia. Youth policy, TV rights, broadcasting and production of matches in Africa,” reads www.cafonline.com.
The meeting, which CAF president Issa Hayatou and Danny Jordaan, president of South Africa Football Associations (Safa), will preside over, will also look at marketing of competitions and sponsorship for clubs and legal issues concerning clubs and status of players.