All is not well with Malawi’s ambassadors in Confederation of African Football (Caf) competitions, Be Forward Wanderers and Masters Security, as they prepare for return legs of their continental competitions at Bingu National Stadium in Lilongwe this week.
Masters are competing in the Confederation Cup while Wanderers are in the Champions League.
The Lilongwe-based Masters are due to take on Angolan side Atletico Petroleos de Luanda on Tuesday while Wanderers will host AS Vita of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) 24 hours later.
However, things at the two Malawian teams are not adding up. For instance, Masters’ players only returned to training yesterday since their return from the first leg match in Luanda on Monday.
It is reported that the team’s players boycotted training, insisting that they would only return to the pitch upon payment of their dues.
Masters General Secretary, Zachariah Nyirenda, confirmed that the players had indeed staged the boycott, but agreed to train from yesterday after a meeting with the team’s owner, Alfred Gangata.
Nyirenda said to compensate for the lost time, the technical panel had resolved to have two training sessions a day in the runup to the Tuesday game.
“As a team, we appreciate that the players entirely depend on what they get from the team to support their families. What is most important is that the matter has now been resolved and the focus is on doing well against Petroleos,” Nyirenda said.
Wanderers’ players were given a day to rest after arriving on Tuesday from the DRC and commenced training on Thursday.
But Nomads’ officials are spending sleepless nights as they hunt for close to K30 million to cater for expenses related to Wednesday’s match.
The team’s chairman, Gift Mkandawire, appealed for financial and moral support from all Malawians to enable them host Vita.
“There are numerous expenses that we will be required to foot. We will be responsible for accommodating Vita because they did the same to us in Kinshasa.
“We will also need to take care of match officials in addition to transporting our team and looking after it in Lilongwe,” Mkandawire pleaded.
Wanderers need to score five unanswered goals if they are to proceed in the competition, while Masters have the uphill task of hitting the net six times