Facing a win-or-bust challenge against an inspired opponent on a memorable date with destiny, this looks like mission impossible, but the Flames have vowed to fight every inch of the way this afternoon.
The opponents are none other than the Black Stars of Ghana whom they are facing in the decisive 2013 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier.
The entire nation, in particular in the capital, is expected to be held spellbound for a good one and a half hours.
Never has Lilongwe been gripped by such a wave of football fever, with the 25 000-seater Civo Stadium expected to turn into a sea of red in sunny conditions perfect for such a grand occasion.
The Flames might be two goals down and up against a team ranked the third best on the continent, but such is the wave of optimism that they are not prepared to fly the white flag until literally the last gasp.
There is no questioning the gulf in class. The Black Stars are miles ahead and are plastered with world-class talent in the likes of Andre â€˜Dedeâ€™ Ayew, Asamoah Gyan, John Paintsil and Christian Atsu.
But that matters less when you are on a desperate mission, when you have the determination to win and a free spirit to fight right to the last person standing.
It is the first biggest football match to be played at the refurbished stadium. The match starts at 2.30pm.
All the contrasting emotions and all the devotion to the Flames will be defined this afternoon.
All our confidence in turning mission impossible into mission possible and all our playersâ€™ resistance to the possibility that this could be the end of the road will be defined in the drama of one massive match this afternoon.
All our prayers for this class of Flames to produce just one heroic performance will be defined in this contest and all the waiting is about to come to an end. By 5pm, we will know our fate.
Flames stand-in skipper Moses â€˜Lubaâ€™ Chavula and battle-hardened forward Esau Kanyenda hinted they could give world football its cinderella tale of the year with a stunning result.
Said Chavula: â€œThe odds are stacked against us because we are two goals down, but the nation should still give us the benefit of the doubt as we will be playing at home.â€
As he staggers into the twilight of a football journey that has rewarded him handsomely, Kanyenda has been thinking long and hard about whether the time has come for him to wave goodbye to international football and concentrate on what remains of his club adventure.
But the man known as the â€˜Black Mambaâ€™ told Weekend Nation on Friday that he believes he still has some unfinished business with the Flames, after failing to lead them to the Nations Cup finals last year.
â€œThis game could open big doors for us because, if we cause an upset, then we will write a successful fairy-tale and we are prepared to sweat blood. It is a massive game and I urge fans to cheer us on the entire 90 minutes,â€ said Kanyenda.
Coach Kinnah Phiri said if his charges play to instructions, they are capable of causing an upset that could cause jubilation across the country.
But what are Flamesâ€™ chances?
â€œWe will go in to give a good fight and we know that if we play well we have a good chance of posting one of the greatest shocks in the history of world football,â€ said Kinnah.
He said in the first leg, he used a 4-5-1 formation as they were playing away, but this time the focus will be to attack while being cautious at the back.
â€œWe know that if we can give 100 percent effort, we can spring a shock result and that is what makes football such an interesting game because anything can happen,â€ said Kinnah from the teamâ€™s Sunbird Capital camp.
Robert Ngâ€™ambi is one of the players the multitude of Malawian fans are counting on to deliver and lift his teammates by sheer force of will from the heart of the pitch alongside workhorse Dave Banda. Joseph Kamwendo and Chimango Kaira are expected to conduct the orchestra up and down the flanks.
Upfront, Kinnah has several options in battle-hardened Kanyenda, Atusaye Nyondo, Robin Ngalande, Chiukepo Msowoya and wonderkid Gabadinho Mhango, but it is Kanyenda and Nyondo who look certain to take the plunge while the others could be thrown in at a later stage.
Harry Nyirenda and Foster Namwela will marshal the defence in the absence of James Sangala and Limbikani Mzava who are suspended.
Ghana flew into the country Friday morning and were expected to get the feel of the match venue later on in the afternoon. They ended their four-day camping in Kenyaâ€™s capital Nairobi on Thursday evening with a gruelling two-hour session at Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani, with the emphasis on set-pieces.
Their coach Kwesi Appiah was quoted by ghanasoccernet.com as saying the battle is far from over.
â€œWe are starting from scratch and every player must be prepared to fight for a win, that is what I have told our players,â€ said Appiah.