The Malawi National Football Team interim supporters committee says it is planning to raise funds for fans to travel to Cameroon next January to cheer the Flames at the delayed 2021 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) finals.
The committee’s chairperson Yona Malunga and secretary Anthony Nyasulu said they are working on fundraising initiatives.
Said Malunga: “We know that the economic situation is bad due to Covid-19, but we want to try and mobilise resources so that at least 10 supporters should accompany the team to Cameroon.
“On paper, 10 is on the lower side, but with hype such as drum beating and singing, they can make a difference.
“We want our players to hear some noise when they are in the field so that they should have confidence. The contribution and importance of supporters, cannot be overemphasised and that is why they are referred to as the 12th player.”
He said while time is not on their side, they will engage an extra gear.
On his part, Nyasulu said the groundwork has already started and they will inform Football Association of Malawi (FAM) about their plan this week.
He said: “We will also approach a number of companies and individuals for financial assistance towards the national cause.
“Most of the teams that qualified are from West Africa and their fans will be there. So, we should not be left behind.”
FAM president Walter Nyamilandu said the fans cannot be left behind.
“The team needs strong moral support far away from home. We need to go to Cameroon with force and leave a lasting impression that Malawi football is vibrant.
“FAM supports the initiative of fans accompanying the Flames and we have already set up a desk office to facilitate travel and logistics of supporters that are interested to go to Cameroon. “We will provide necessary services for supporters that are also ready to pay for the travel and accommodation to Cameroon and assist with visa applications.
“We are at the moment working to get clearance from Confederation of African Football [CAF] that fans will be allowed at the tournament and once we have been given the greenlight, we will open up channels of communication with the public.”