Gangling forward Russell Mwafulirwa is set to relaunch his career at his former club, Silver Strikers, after being plagued by injuries that reduced him to a sideshow in the past two years.
Bankers chairperson McDonald Mafuta-Mwale on Wednesday confirmed that Mwafulirwa, who last played competitive football at lower league Swedish club IK Sleipner in 2012, is one of the players they have registered for the 2014/15 TNM Super League season.
“He is our son and it was Silver that gave him a platform to be spotted by a foreign team. The aim is to help him relaunch his career after being dodged by injuries for the past few years and there could have been no better place than at Silver,” said Mafuta-Mwale.
He said Mwafulirwa was recommended by the coaching panel after assessing him during a friendly match between the current team and ex-players.
“We are hopeful that he will not only rejuvenate his career, but also turn back the hands of time when he used to be our marksman,” said Mafuta-Mwale.
The player could not be reached, but Silver coach Stein Chirwa confirmed his return to the club.
“We want to help him rejuvenate his career. From what I saw, he is still a good player that he was only that he has to work on his fitness,” said Chirwa.
The 31-year-old Mwafulirwa recently spoke out his frustration about his recurring knee injury in an interview with our sister paper the Weekend Nation.
“It is quite hard taking money from your pocket all the time. I am a family man. I pay rentals and feed my family. It is quite hard, but I do not have pressure. I saved some. Russell is not finished until he announces hanging of his boots,” Mwafulirwa said in an interview.
At his peak, Mwafulirwa starred for Jomo Cosmos and Ajax Cape Town in the South African top-flight league, before clinching a deal with Swedish club IFK Norrkoping whom he helped earn promotion into the top league.
In June 2012, he severed ties with Norrkoping before joining the lower league side IK Sleipner. Efforts to relaunch his career in South Africa last year proved futile due to the injury.
Meanwhile, Silver are reportedly also courting their former midfield maestro Peter Mgangira for the position of assistant coach.
Mafuta-Mwale could neither deny nor confirm the rumour, saying: “There could be fire in that some, but we’ll only be able to comment on the issue tomorrow.”
Mgangira is currently assistant coach to Deklerk Msakakuona at Blue Eagles FC.
Both Mwafulirwa and Mgangira were part of the Flames squad that qualified and took part in the 2010 Africa Cup of Nations in Angola.