The Flames rued missed chances in Wednesday night’s barren draw against Cosafa Castle Cup defending champions Namibia’s Brave Warriors in an international friendly match at Sam Nujoma Stadium in Windhoek.
Malawi created a plethora of chances, but they failed to make them count with forwards Chiukepo Msowoya and Frank ‘Gabadinho’ Mhango hitting blanks.
Although the draw did a lot of damage control for the Flames following their 0-3 defeat by Zimbabwe in Africa Cup of Nations qualifier last Sunday, the result was not a true reflection of the state of affairs as they could have scored at least three goals..
Namibia tried to utilise home advantage, but it was the Flames that stole the show; forcing the hosts into rearguard action for the better part of the match.
The defence marshalled by Miracle Gabeya was rock solid while the midfield battle was won thanks to Rafik Namwela’s unequalled talent.
Midfielders Joseph Kamwendo, Peter Wadabwa, Dalitso Sailesi and Gerard Phiri supplied the much needed balls in abundance, but Msowoya and Gabadinho were wasteful.
After the game coach Mtawali praised his charges for showing character during a match which was played under floodlights on a chilly evening.
“We played according to instruction. We did what we planned to do and I am impressed with how the players responded after last Sunday loss to Zimbabwe,” Mtawali said.
He, however, noted the need to work on finishing.
“We did not utilise the numerous chances we were able to create. We will have to work on that,” Mtawali said.
Namibia came into the game hoping to have an easy ride, but after the tables turned on them, it ended up being a frustrating night.
Namibia Football Association (NFA) competitions manager Titus Kunamwene could not believe it was the same Malawi that lost to Zimbabwe last weekend.
“I think the next team that plays Malawi is in big trouble,” Kunamwene said.
Malawi play their Cosafa Cup opening game against Angola on Sunday evening in Group B cracker.
Namibia play their last friendly against Zambia in Lusaka on Saturday before facing Botswana in the quarter-finals on June 18. n