Flames coach Meck Mwase says today’s friendly against Ethiopia will help him assess local players who have been inactive due to the suspension of the TNM Super League due to Covid-19 public gatherings restrictions.
The international friendly will be played behind closed doors at Bahir Dar National Stadium in Amhara region’s capital Bahir Dar which borders Sudan, the host to Malawi’s 2022 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) qualifier against South Sudan on March 24.
Mwase has travelled to Ethiopia with 16 TNM Super League players and three foreign-based players to feature in the international friendly.
He said: “We have stayed for a long time without playing. This friendly is therefore, going to give us a good picture of the fitness of local players, who have have been inactive since January because of the suspension of the TNM Super League.”
Ethiopia coach Webetu Abate is also gearing up for 2022 Afcon qualifier against Madagascar in Group K.
The Flames arrived in Ethiopia on Monday evening and were expected to train yesterday before this afternoon’s match.
Addis Ababa-based Saint George attacker Robin Ngalande joined the team on Monday evening, according to Football Association of Malawi competitions and communication director Gomezgani Zakazaka.
Ngalande completes the list of foreign-based players to feature in the friendly after Mozambique’s UD Songo duo of captain John CJ Banda and Schumacher Kuwali joined the team in Blantyre.
After the match, the Flames will tomorrow cross over into neighbouring Sudan for the 2022 Afcon qualifier against South Sudan who are playing away in Khartoum because their home ground, Juba Stadium, is closed for renovations.
Malawi beat South Sudan 1-0 in the first leg at Kamuzu Stadium through a Frank Gabadinho lone-goal.
The victory is also the Flames’ only victory in Group B tha also comprises leaders Burkina Faso and second-placed Uganda.
Malawi is in second position while while South Sudan anchors the group.