Football Association of Malawi (FAM) president Walter Nyamilandu says the Flames did not lose to Comoros on Saturday, but a French select side.
He was reacting to the Flames’ 2-1 loss to lowly-ranked Comoros in a 2019 Africa Cup of Nations’(Afcon) qualifier in Moroni which virtually ended Malawi’s campaign that yielded nothing.
Nyamilandu also accused the Indian Ocean island nation of “buying foreign nationals to make a national team”.
He said: “This is unfair practice and its immoral.It’s tantamount to cheating to buy success. The reality is that Malawi lost to French select and not Comoros.
“It defeats the whole purpose of fairplay and the spirit of nationalism [and] I won’t stop denouncing this shameful practice.
“A small nation which is the size of Likoma Island cannot raise a national team to beat Malawi. What’s the difference with cheating?”
The FAM president, who is also a Fifa Council member, said at continental level, Africa will continue to lag behind “because we are developing European football players and not exposing real African players”.
Asked on the way forward, the FAM boss said it had been a rough campaign, but it could have been better.
“We did not yield the desired results from the rebuilding exercise, but I am sure this will put us in good stead for the future.
“It was a necessary investment that has seen a lot of talented players coming into the team, but unfortunately it has come at a cost,” he said.
Nyamilandu said the Flames should have still won against Comoros “irrespective of them fielding French nationals”, but they lacked depth and the killer instinct.
However, local football analysts Charles Nyirenda and George Kaudza Masina said the FAM president was missing the point.
Said Nyirenda: “The president’s outburst is misplaced. I thought we beat the same side at Bingu National Stadium, that time we did not complain and now it is an issue because we have lost?
“Comoros have not committed any crime because Fifa are very clear on how a player can be allowed to change his nationality and it happens elsewhere. It is not an issue at all.”
He said the problem in Malawi is that things are done haphahazardly and not much is being done to develop players.
“If Comoros featured French nationals, then that should be their problem in terms of the future and not ours. We should concentrate on doing the right things,” said Nyirenda.
On his part, Kaudza Masina said: “Whether Comoros featured a French select side or not is not an issue. We have seen France winning the World Cup with the bulk of players that have migrated from other countries.
“I thought it should have been time to conduct some soul-searching on the way forward.”n