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Ex-Flames stars want RVG out

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By Mabvuto Kambuwe:

Following Malawi national football team’s comical display in the Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) qualifiers, pressure is increasing on Coach Ronny van Geneugden (RVG) and Football Association of Malawi (Fam) President Walter Nyamilandu to step down.

The Flames have failed to qualify for five consecutive Afcon finals since 2010 and some soccer analysts are of the view that Nyamilandu and RVG have run out of ideas.

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Former Flames attacking midfielder Peterkins Kayira said Nyamilandu and his committee have let the nation down.

“The performance of the coach is measured based on results. So RVG has failed alongside Walter and his executive committee. If I were RVG, I would have honourably packed my bags other than wait to be booted out,” Kayira said.

Former Civo United and Flames defender Willy Cham’bwinja concurred with Kayira, saying both RVG and Nyamilandu have failed.

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“It is better for both RVG and Walter to go so that others can take over. We are tired of being punching bags in Africa. We were told RVG was hired to help us qualify for the Afcon finals but he has failed. So he must resign honourably.

“If he were a local coach, I am sure he would have been fired by now. Why are we still keeping him when results are not improving? This is too much. We cannot wait for his resignation,” Cham’bwinja said.

But both Nyamilandu and RVG were not available for their comments.

The Flames missed the Afcon finals qualification after losing 2-1 to Comoros Islands on Saturday in Moroni.

Following the defeat, Malawi are down to position four in Group B with four points from five games whereas Comoros are third with five points from the same number of games.

Leaders Morocco have qualified for next year’s finals with 10 points from five games followed by hosts Cameroon on eight points from the same number of games.

The Flames host Morocco at Kamuzu Stadium in Blantyre whereas Cameroon will play Comoros in March.

Malawi last qualified for the Afcon finals in 2010 when the tournament was held in Angola under the tutelage of Kinnah Phiri.

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