The Football Association of Malawi (FAM) chief executive officer Suzgo Nyirenda has hinted that the Flames might withdraw from the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) qualifiers due to lack of funds.
Nyirenda said this on Wednesday when announcing the indefinite suspension of the national team’s camp training for November 11’s home Group B match against second-placed Mali and an away trip to Ethiopia on November 15.
The training was scheduled to start on November 4 2014. Malawi anchors the group on three points and badly need wins in the final matches.
Nyirenda said the training would only start once funding is sourced. Efforts to source extra budgetary support from the national team’s main sponsors, government, have hit a blank wall.
“The decision by our main sponsor, the Malawi Government, not to provide financial resources for the previous fixture and remaining fixtures of the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations has left FAM with no option but to suspend camp training of the Malawi National Football Team to avoid incurring debts that FAM would not be able to settle,” Nyirenda explained.
“FAM would like to further note that in the event that funding is not identified, it will be compelled to withdraw the Malawi National Football Team from the on-going Africa Cup of Nations.”
Withdrawal from Afcon could earn FAM the wrath of Caf with sanctions including suspension from football activities for the next two years.
A few months ago, FAM president Walter Nyamilandu also said the Flames would withdraw from Afcon after being advised by government to priorities between the Under-20’s participation in African Youth Championship or have the Flames in action.
In a dramatic turn of events, Nyamilandu told the international media that he withdrawing from Afcon was never suggested.