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Flames drop on Fifa rankings

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Gomezgani Zakazaka

Malawi National Football Team has dropped two places on Fifa rankings released Thursday.

The Flames are now on position 124 from 122 with 1,144 points.

The fall could be attributed to inactivity during the September Fifa window as Malawi failed to play any international friendly due to lack of funds.

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During the period under review, Flames’ home-based players also exited the African Nations Championship on away goals rule after drawing 1-1 with Mozambique on aggregate.

Malawi Coach Mario Marinica attributed the drop to his team’s failure to play friendlies during the Fifa international window but also questioned some aspects of the whole exercise.

’’Honestly, I will not make that much out of the current Fifa ranking. This ranking does not tell the true story. Belgium was, for four years, at the top of the rankings but they never won any major tournament,’’ Marinica said.

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After the delayed 2021 Africa Cup of Nations finals in Cameroon early this year, the Flames climbed 10 places on the rankings from position 129 to 119 in February.

Football Association of Malawi (Fam) Competitions and Communications Director Gomezgani Zakazaka said the drop was expected.

’’It is quite obvious. These are results of non-activity in the last window,’’ Zakazaka said.

Malawi achieved their best ranking of 53 in 1992 while the worst was 138 in 2008.

Sports analyst Sherry Msuku said the Flames have paid for their inactivity during the Fifa International window.

’’I saw it coming. We risk dropping further if we don’t play against top-ranked teams,’’ Msuku said.

In Africa, Senegal have maintained their top ranking and are on 18th position in the world.

Morocco are second in Africa whereas Tunisia and Nigeria are third and fourth, respectively.

Brazil remain the number one team in the world with 1,841 points followed by Belgium and Argentina on second and third, respectively.

France are on position four whereas England are fifth.

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