Malawi national football team Coach, Meke Mwase, is confident that his charges can advance to the group stages of the 2022 Qatar World Cup qualifying campaign.
Mwase said this Tuesday after the morning training session at Kamuzu Stadium in Blantyre. The Flames depart for Botswana today.
“We will play as a team and, of course, be cautious that we are playing away. In football, you can count on hard work for you to win. We are happy that our boys are working. We will try our best to reach the group stages of the qualifiers,” he said.
The Flames face Botswana on Saturday before hosting the Zebras on Tuesday.
Mwase hopes that the squad would score goals to enhance its chances of reaching the next round.
The former Flames defence pillar has maintained most of the players who were part of the Cosafa Cup squad in South Africa.
“Of course, I am very happy with the squad I have picked for the Botswana match. It gave us selection headache. Of course, we have been watching our counterparts on YouTube and we were together at Cosafa; so, we have a clue of how they play,” he said.
Meanwhile, South Africa-based forward Richard Mbulu, who was down with malaria, has been included in the squad.
Malawi travel to Botswana in what is Mwase’s first assignment as a full-time coach after impressing at Cosafa Cup to earn a one-year contract as Belgian Ronny van Geneugden’s successor.
In interim capacity, Mwase presided over eight games in all competitions, chalking three draws, winning thrice and losing twice.
Botswana have new coach Adel Amrouche, an Algeria-born Belgian with vast experience of Africa football.
Amrouche has, in an interview with Botswana’s M’megi newspaper, promised to introduce attacking football.
“When we lose the ball, all players work, when we have the ball, attack. It’s total football. We will play with organisation, we will play in phases,” he said.
Flames travelling squad:
Goalkeepers: Brighton Munthali (Silver Strikers), Ernest Kakhobwe (Nyasa Big Bullets)
Defenders: Charles Petro, Precious Sambani, Gomezgani Chirwa (Nyasa Big Bullets), Stanley Sanudi, Peter Cholopi, Dennis Chembezi (Be Forward Wanderers).
Midfielders: Chimwemwe Idana, Peter Banda, Chimango Kayira (Nyasa Big Bullets), Chikoti Chirwa (Kamuzu Barracks), Micium Mhone (Blue Eagles), Yamikani Chester (North Carolina FC, USA), John Banda (Ferroviaro de Nampula, Mozambique), Gerald Phiri (Baroka FC, South Africa)
Strikers: Hassan Kajoke (Nyasa Big Bullets), Gabadinho Mhango (Orlando Pirates, South Africa), Mbulu (Baroka , South Africa) Robin Ngalande (Zira, Azerbaijan).