Mozambique-based forward Schumacher Kuwali has resumed training after a month-long injury lay off but has declared himself unfit to contend for a place in the Malawi national football team squad to face Morocco next month.
The Flames, comprising locally based players, have regrouped for the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Morocco on September 7.
Coach Ronny van Geneugden has not yet named the foreign-based players that will be part of the squad.
Kuwali, who turns out for the neighbouring country’s top league outfit Ferroviário de Nampula, was leading goal scorer before he sustained a hamstring injury in July.
Speaking in an interview yesterday, Kuwali said he started training last week but insisted he has not gained match fitness.
“I am only 70 percent fit and that is not a good level to play for the national team. I am disappointed because I really wanted to be part of the team,” he said.
Kuwali also expressed his frustration at losing ground in the golden boot chase.
“If I had continued without injuries I would be in charge of the race. I am frustrated that things haven’t turned out that way,” he said.
Flames team manager George Sangala said he has been getting updates from Kuwali on the progress of his recovery but a final decision had not been made.
“We have been in touch with him because we thought he could recover in time and be part of the team. The last time we talked he said he has resumed training but we have been unsure about his levels of fitness,” he said.
Sangala said they are currently assessing all the foreign-based players before announcing the names.
“It is cases like those of Schumacher that need to be scrutinised. This is why we have taken time to release the names of the foreign based players,” he said.