TNM Super League relegated side, Blantyre United, have finally closed shop, joining a long queue of clubs that died a natural death due to financial problems.
Last season, United hinted on disbanding after struggling financially in the elite league due to the withdrawal of the then owner, Lawson Nakoma’s financial support.
United General Secretary, Malekano Chisoma, on Friday said they had given up on the team after failing to secure sponsorship.
“The coming in of Kukoma towards the end of last season was a very big relief and we had hoped that they would continue sponsoring us.
“Otherwise, we cannot continue running the team without finances since we are in huge debts that we incurred last season. We tried to sacrifice the little we could manage, but Malawi football is not profitable,” Chisoma said. Football analyst, Higger Mkandawire, has described the development as worrisome.
“This is not new in Malawi’s football circls. Almost all Blantyre based teams, apart from Be Forward
Wanderers, have been on the verge of disbanding, including Nyasa Big Bullets at some point.
“The corporate world should bail out such teams. They can come in to help a team partly and not full sponsorship,” Mkandawire said.
United produced top players such Lusaka Dynamos’ Dalitso Sailesi, Polokwane City’s Muhammad Sulumba, Victor Limbani and Thoko Stambuli of Silver Strikers.
Last season, United, who evolved from Escom Reserves, finished with 24 points from 30 games on the log table before being relegated alongside Chitipa United and Premier Bet Wizards.