Blue Eagles Assistant Coach Christopher Sibale directed his frustration at Super League of Malawi (Sulom) after his charges lost for the first time in the 2022 TNM Super League season.
Eagles’ free fall in the top flight league continued on Sunday, as they lost 1-0 to TN Stars at Kasungu Stadium.
Sibale was emotional, saying the absence of three players captain Schumacher Kuwali, Micium Mhone and Sankhani Mkandawire, who were with the Flames in South Africa for the Cosafa Cup, contributed to the team’s loss.
“It was a deliberate move by Sulom to fix the matches. I think they have a team which they want to win the league. Those who make fixtures had an aim. But we will keep on fighting,” Sibale said.
Before the match, Sulom General Secretary Williams Banda insisted that the match would go ahead because Eagles did not contribute more than four players to the national team.
“Our stand is that the TN Stars versus Blue Eagles fixture stands and if one team decides not to play, rules will apply. Rules clearly say a team can only be exempted from playing matches if they contribute more than three players to the national team and they are no exception,” Banda told Times Sport.
It was Eagles’ first defeat of the season. The defeat also summed up Eagles’ poor run, having failed to win a match in six consecutive matches.
Despite the loss, the Eagles remain second on the 16-member log table with 30 points from 15 matches, 11 points behind leaders Nyasa Big Bullets.
Alexander Cosmas scored the only goal of the match.
For Stars, it was an important win as they finished the first round on a high and kept their relegation survival hopes alive.
With the victory, Stars moved from the bottom to position 15 with 12 points from 15 matches.
Stars Assistant Coach Honest Nkhwazi said the win is a morale booster.
“It feels great to win our first match at home. I am really proud of the players,” Nkhwazi said.
Elsewhere, Civil Service United saw their Airtel Top 8 Cup hopes evaporate into thin air following a 2-1 loss to Dedza Dynamos at Dedza Stadium.
Promise Kamwendo netted a brace whereas Christopher Kumwembe scored for Civil. Civil have finished the first round on position 10 with 17 points whereas the rookies finished on position seven with 22 points.
Moyale Barracks thrashed Rumphi United 5-1 at Rumphi Stadium, with goals from Lesman Singini (hattrick), Raphael Phiri and Gasten Sinkonda whereas Alick Harawa was on target for the hosts.
Ramadhan Mtafu scored the lone goal of the match as Karonga United beat Ekwendeni Hammers 1-0 at Karonga Ground.