The circus surrounding the future role of Mario Marian Marinica took another twist when Football Association of Malawi (Fam) insisted that the Romania-born British citizen will remain Football Association of Malawi Technical Director (TD).
There have been a number of statements since the Flames returned from the Africa Cup of Nations finals in Cameroon where the side reached the Round of 16 for the first time.
Fam Sub-technical Committee Chairperson Tiya Somba Banda said the country’s national teams would be better off with Marinica as the TD and not national team head coach.
“It should be as earlier communicated unless otherwise. We want the fast and very fast football to be our football DNA from grassroots level to the senior national team. This should also apply to women’s football. This can only be achieved with Marinica as TD and not national team head coach,” Banda said.
The development means Meck Mwase, who was Marinica’s deputy at Afcon finals, remains head coach for the team up until his fate is decided.
Mwase and his assistants Bob Mpinganjira and Lovemore Fazili have running contracts with Fam till the end of March this year.
However, Marinica said nothing had been decided yet between him and Fam as his employer.
“We have had no discussions yet regarding my role at the national team. A lot is being said about our performance at the Afcon but I am staying calm until we are told the final stand,” he said.
Marinica penned a three-year deal as TD with Fam but the association asked him to take charge of the Flames at Afcon finals after noticing technical deficiency.
He handed competitive debut to defender Lawrence Chaziya, goalkeeper Charles Thom and midfielder Zebron Kalima at Afcon finals.
Fam President Walter Nyamilandu recently said it was a good problem to have Marinica as TD and interim Head of Technical at Afcon.
Nyamilandu said issues regarding the TD could only be solved at an executive committee meeting.
Flames will return to action next month taking part in Chan qualifiers.
Peter Fote is a Sports Journalist with huge experience in radio and Television reporting, production and presentation. He once worked with Malawi Broadcasting Corporation (MBC) and is currently working for Times Media Group.