By Mabvuto Kambuwe:
Newly appointed Malawi national football team Coach, Meke Mwase, is considering maintaining the same backroom staff as he officially assumes the position from July 1.
Mwase was offered the job on a one-year contract some two weeks ago and Football Association of Malawi (Fam) gave him the freedom to choose his assistants.
He replaced Belgian Ronny van Geneugden, whose two-year tenure was not renewed after expiring on March 31 due to poor results.
Mwase said he had a good working relationship with his backroom staff; hence, his intention to maintain the status quo.
“I believe it would be good for me to keep every member of the technical panel because we were working as a team. I expect to meet the members this week to see if they will accept to continue working with me,” he said.
The former TN Stars coach reportedly met with Fam officials last week in Blantyre and is expected to sign a contract with the government.
The development will likely affect Silver Strikers and Be Forward Wanderers as their coaches were part of Mwase’s backroom staff.
Silver assistant Coach Lovemore Fazili was Mwase’s assistant whereas Bob Mpinganjira was the physical trainer.
James Sangala and Swadick Sanudi were team manager and goalkeepers’ trainer, respectively.
Silver General Secretary, Lawrence Yobe, said the club was aware that Fazili and Mwase had a good working relationship.
“Although it is not automatic that Fazili will be appointed Mwase’s assistant, we have started strategizing, in case he is picked for the job,” Yobe said.
The Flames are expected to take part in World Cup qualifiers scheduled for September.
Mwase guided the Flames to the Cosafa Cup quarter-finals for the first time in four years but lost 4-2 on post-match penalties to Zambia after a 2-2 stalemate in regulation time.
Following the loss, the Flames were relegated to the Cosafa Plate where they reached the finals after beating Comoros Islands 2-1 before losing 5-4 to South Africa on post-match penalties.
During the regional competition’s group stages, the Flames started with a 3-0 victory over Syechelles before beating Namibia 2-1 in the second game.
Malawi finished their group stages with a 1-1 draw with Mozambique.
The Flames were the highest scoring team at the competition, having netted 10 goals against four.
Malawi were also named the Fairplay Team of the Tournament, with Gerald Phiri Junior being named Player of the Tournament.
Phiri Junior also finished as the joint top goal-scorer alongside compatriot Gabadihno Mhango with three goals each.