Flames captain Joseph Kamwendo has admitted that his performance against Zimbabwe’s Warriors last Saturday was poor, saying he let the nation down.
Speaking in an interview for the first time after the Flames’ heart-breaking 1-2 defeat to the Warriors in a 2017 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier, Kamwendo said: “I had a very bad day, my performance was poor, but I will bounce back.
“I know there are some fans who don’t want me, but you cannot be a bad player just because of one game. It was one of those days when we couldn’t come to the party, but I will bounce back. I just want to apologise to the fans for the agony they went through following the loss. We are very sorry, that was unacceptable.”
Kamwendo also dismissed talk that he refused to be substituted during the match.
“That will never happen. As a professional, there is no way I can do that.
“I don’t know the origins of this talk, but if you followed the events, you might have realised that I took off the captain’s armband and gave it to Esau [Kanyenda] which was proof that I was ready to go out. Maybe, the coaches had a change of mind. As I said, it was not my day, but I will never refuse to be substituted,” said Kamwendo.
He also said despite the loss, the Flames should not be counted out of contention, “because we still have a long way to go, the qualification campaign has just started.”
Football Association of Malawi (FAM) general secretary Suzgo Nyirenda yesterday said they are investigating reports that the DR Congo-based midfielder refused to be substituted.
“We have asked for a report from the [former] coaches and we are hopeful that they will provide it to us as they are still part of the system. In the absence of that, we are treating it as mere speculation,” said Nyirenda.