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Fam gets tough on club surety

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By Mabvuto Kambuwe:

Casper Jangale Football Association of Malawi (Fam) has said it will be forced to review sureties Super League clubs pay as a commitment to fulfil fixtures ahead of next season.

This comes after clubs such as Nchalo United and Dwangwa United nearly pulled out of all competitions in the middle of last season due to financial constraints.

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Each of the TNM Super League’s 16 clubs pays K1 million as a commitment to fulfil fixtures before the start of the season. The money is remitted back to the clubs at the end of the season.

Fam Transfer Matching System Manager Casper Jangale on Friday said the matter would be tabled at the association’s emergency committee meeting before the start of the season.

“We have to review the regulations, especially the surety paid by teams to compete in the Super League. Financial criteria have to be tightened to protect the interests of our game. We need to up it because at the rate we are going, we may end up seeing a social team playing in the top flight league,” Jangale said.

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But Super League clubs have mixed reactions on the matter.

Civil Sporting Club general secretary Ronald Chiwaula welcomed the idea, saying the association should be strict on all clubs in the top flight league.

“Based on experiences in the just ended season, I totally agree with Fam on the matter. Clubs should show seriousness before the start of the season and we should avoid scenarios where they struggle to fulfil matches due to lack of funds,” Chiwaula said.

Silver General Secretary, Lawrence Yobe, said increasing the surety would affect some of clubs in the 16-team league.

“It is like a double-edged sword because most clubs usually struggle to raise funds to fulfil fixtures so raising the surety will add more problems. In our case, we also spent a lot of money to fulfil our fixtures,” Yobe said.

Newly-promoted teams such as Mlatho Mponela and Chitipa United are expected to fulfil club licencing system requirements ahead of the 2019 season if they are to be eligible for action in the top flight. They will be joined by champions from the South where the season is yet to be concluded.

Mlatho representative Steve Chapola asked for more time before commenting on the matter. In the just-ended season, Nchalo and Dwangwa survived on well-wishers to fulfil their games.

Nchalo threatened to pull out of all competitions just 13 weeks into the season but reversed the decision after the intervention of some well-wishers.

The future of Dwangwa in the top flight league is also not known as they are in a crisis due to lack of funds.

In 2016, Max Bullets disbanded while the league was in progress whereas Blantyre United were also on the verge of pulling out of the league in 2017 due to financial constraints.

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