National Youth Football Association (NYFA) President, Chimango Munthali, has insisted that it might be unfair to set targets for the Malawi Under-17 National Football Team at the forthcoming Council of Southern Africa Football Associations (Cosafa) Tournament.
Malawi is in group B alongside hosts Mauritius, Zimbabwe and Botswana.
The tournament will run from July 21 to 30.
It is going to be the Junior Flames’ first competitive showdown since taking part in a similar tournament also in Mauritius last year.
The team won bronze medal last year.
Munthali has since cast doubt on the team’s chances of achieving something greater this year.
Munthali said it was a pity that the country has failed to nurture the talented team.
“It is going to be an injustice to the coaches and the players if we try to set any target for them this year. This year’s team is so disadvantaged,” he said.
“We have gone the whole year without keeping the players busy. So, I admit that we have not done much to prepare for this tournament. And that is just a tip of an iceberg to the challenges youth football is going through.”
Munthali said stakeholders are yet to strategise on the talent identification exercise for the Under-17.
He said the team might cling to the majority of players from last year’s squad.
Munthali, on the other hand, said there was need to give new players a chance.
Last year, the Junior Flames’ forward Peter Banda won the Golden Boot Award after netting five goals.
Namibia was crowned champions after overcoming South Africa 3-1 on post-match penalties.