The Flames are in the last pot of the 2022 TotalEnergies Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) draw seeding which comprises the least ranked teams at the tournament.
The draw for the continental showpiece is slated for tomorrow in Yaounde, Cameroon where Malawi national football team will know its group opponents.
Apart from Malawi, others in the the last pot are Sudan, Equatorial Guinea, Comoros, Ethiopia and The Gambia.
Football Association of Malawi (FAM) president Walter Nyamilandu yesterday said being rated as minnows takes some pressure off the Flames.
He said: “We know that Flames are considered underdogs at the tournament. But we do not care about how lowly others think about us.
“We are determined to shock the world with our unique style of play. We are going to Cameroon to make a difference and to prove a point. Those that will underestimate us will do so at their own peril.
“I would, therefore, like to rally the fans to give the Flames the much-needed moral support. Let us plan to travel to Cameroon to cheer the national team. This is a wonderful opportunity for us to show our pride in our country.”
Flames coach Meck Mwase left the country on Friday to attend the draw.
He said before departure: “It’s going to be exciting attending such a big continental function. In football there are never easy draws and we will welcome whatever teams we will be paired against.
“Knowing our opponents will help us start preparations as it will guide which type of players we should select and teams to engage for friendly matches as well as camping destinations.”
The Flames, who are ranked 115, qualified for the continental event for the third time after finishing as Group B runners-up to Burkina Faso.
Hosts Cameroon and title-holders Algeria are among the six top seeds confirmed this weekend for the 24-team African safari.
Cameroon have been champions five times and Algeria twice. Senegal, currently the top ranked team in Africa, and three former champions, Tunisia, Nigeria and Morocco complete the pot one line-up.
Sadio Mane-inspired Senegal have twice reached the final of the marquee African competition, but lost in a penalty shoot-out against Cameroon in 2002 and fell 1-0 to Algeria two years ago.
Seeding was determined by the August Fifa rankings, which Senegal topped followed by Tunisia, Algeria, Morocco, Nigeria, Egypt, Ghana, Cameroon, Ivory Coast and Mali to complete the top 10.
The strength of the 24-team line-up is illustrated by Egypt and Ghana, who have won the Cup of Nations 11 times between them, being only second seeds.
Cape Verde, Gabon, Mauritania, Sierra Leone, Zimbabwe and Guinea-Bissau are in Pot Three.
There are 10 previous winners of the Nations Cup among the qualifiers for the January 9-February 6 tournament at six venues in five cities, including fourth seeds Ethiopia and Sudan.
The draw at the Palais du Congress will divide the entrants into six groups, from which all the winners and runners-up plus the best four third-placed teams will advance to the knockout phase.