Malawi national football team coach, Ernest Mtawali, has refused to read too much into what appears, on paper, a fair 2015 Cecafa Senior Challenge Cup group C draw.
Mtawali was reacting to the draw held in the host nation of Ethiopia Wednesday, putting the guest participants, the Flames, in the group comprising Djibouti, South Sudan and Sudan.
“There are no more small teams in world football. Nonetheless, it is a fair draw. I do not want to set targets, we will take each game as it comes. We are going there to compete and rebuild the team,” Mtawali said ahead of the first preliminary round game against Sudan on November 23.
Malawi, who are in camp and will leave for Addis Ababa next Thursday, date Djibouti two days later followed by a meeting with South Sudan on November 27.
Top two teams from each of the four-member three groups will book a place in the quarter-final.
All the Flames games will be played in the Ethiopian town of Bahir Dar. The cup will run from November 21 to December 6,2015.
The number one and two teams in Malawi’s group will face in the quarter-final the number two in Group B comprising Kenya, Uganda, Burundi and Zanzibar.
All the group’s opponents are below Malawi, according to the latest Fifa Coca-Cola rankings. Malawi is on position 97, Sudan currently 128th, Djibouti 207th, whereas South Sudan are ranked 134.
The quarterfinals will be played on November 30 in Addis Ababa.
The draw has put to rest speculations that the Flames might not take part in the tournament.
Malawi will take part in the tournament as the only guest nation replacing Eritrea, who pulled out. Kenya are defending champions for the tournament did not take place last year.
Full Cecafa Senior Challenge Cup draw
GROUP A GROUP B GROUP C
Ethiopia Kenya Sudan
Rwanda Uganda Malawi
Tanzania Burundi South Sudan
Somalia Zanzibar Djibouti
Method of qualification:-
Two top teams from each group plus the best two third-placed finishers will qualify into the quarter-
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