With the transfer window now open, some TNM Super League clubs say they are planning to beef up their squads in the quest to either win the title or avoid relegation.
Following the conclusion of the first round, Super League of Malawi (Sulom) general secretary (GS) Williams Banda yesterday said the second round is scheduled to kick-off on August 12.
“We are looking at having a two-week break and the transfer window has since opened [with effect from July 30] and will close at midnight on August 11,” he said.
The Sulom GS has since appealed to clubs to adhere to transfer rules and regulations.
“We also want to urge the clubs to follow the modern domestic transfer matching system [DTMS] which was shunned by many at the start of the season,” he said.
Banda also said while the competition was stiff in the first round, there was a notable lapse in discipline.
Meanwhile, champions Be Forward Wanderers, who finished third in the first round, have ruled out any possibilities of roping in new players.
The club’s GS Mike Butao said: “We are not recruiting. We already have a deep quality squad. We have some players who hardly featured in the first round, but will be available for the second round such as Harry Nyirenda, Jaffalie Chande, William Thole, Fransisco Madinga and Simeon Singa.
“So, these will be almost like ‘new signings’. Having said that, the first round has not been satisfactory. We started poorly, perhaps due to fatigue from CAF Champions League excursions.
“Fortunately, we regrouped and got our act together. Hopefully, the team will get better as the players get more and more used to [coach] Bob [Mpinganjira’s] tactics.”
However, leaders Nyasa Big Bullets, second-placed Silver Strikers and fourth-placed Civil Sporting Club have said they will invade the transfer market.
Ironically, the People’s Team and the Bankers were chasing the same players.
Bullets chief executive officer (CEO) Fleetwood Haiya said they are in the process of finalising their former midfielder Dalitso Sailesi’s deal after the winger terminated his five-year contract with Zambian Premier League side Lusaka Dynamos.
“For Dalitso, we have even agreed personal terms and what remains now is his clearance. We are also hoping to finalise Raphael Phiri’s deal with Civil Sporting whose negotiations started in January this year,” he said.
Haiya further said they will promote eight players from their reserve side.
“Three of them—Ernest Petro, Dave Banda and Chimwemwe Idana—were already elevated as semi-seniors, but we are looking at drafting in five more,” he said.
On his part, Silver GS Thabo Chakaka Nyirenda said they are hoping to sign one player, “but they could be two”.
He said: “Our first target was Sailesi, but we established that he wanted to take us for a ride because he was not forthcoming. So, we dropped the pursuit. For now, we have made progress on Phiri and we have agreed personal terms with the player. We have also been in serious talks with his club and we are waiting to hear from them..”
Apparently, Civil Sporting GS Ronald Chiwaula, who on Monday told The Nation that the player is not for sale, yesterday changed his tune, saying the executive committee will meet to discuss the two clubs’ bids on Phiri.
“We wouldn’t want to be seen to be blocking the player, but it is something that the executive will have to discuss,” said the Civil Servants’ GS who added that on their part, they are planning to sign two defenders.
In an interview yesterday, the red-hot Phiri said he would make a determination after meeting Civil Sporting’s GS.
Meanwhile, table-anchors Nchalo United’s chairperson Peter Chiipanthenga said while they would want to boost their squad, financial hurdles could prove a challenge.
“We need to bring in one or two players to strengthen some key positions of the team because we have a big task of trying to survive relegation, but what we will do in the second round largely depends on availability of funds,” he said.
Second from the bottom Mafco FC’s GS Jimmy Chisenga said they will sit down with the technical panel to see if there are areas that need to be strengthened ahead of the second round.