Mighty Wanderers have been dealt a blow in their quest to hold on to one of their best players Rafiq Namwera, who is on the verge of signing for South Africa National First Division side Black Leopards.
Namwera is expected to sign as a free agent following successful trials he underwent at the club in November last year.
The midfielder is scheduled to leave the country on Sunday to sign a two-and-a-half-year deal with Leopards.
Wanderers Board Secretary Humphrey Mvula said they wish Namwera well as he opens a new chapter of his life.
“We have indeed lost the player. He will be joining Leopards as a free agent. We wish him all the best. Rafiq has been a good player and impressed Leopards during the time he secretly left for trials. There is nothing we can do about this. You don’t chain a player who is not contracted to you,” Mvula said.
He said the club was in a race against time to renew other players’ contracts.
“Issues of sponsorship and players’ contracts are the lifeline of our club. You may wish to know that most of our players’ contracts have run out and we need to move quickly. There has to be money for us to extend their stay at the club,” Mvula said.
Namwera has 15 appearances for the Malawi National Football Team and will follow in the footsteps of former Wanderers teammates Harry Nyirenda and Allan Kamanga.
Other Malawian stars who also played for Leopards are Peter Mponda and Fischer Kondowe, Dave Banda, Robert Ng’ambi and Grant Lungu.
An insider who also facilitated the move confirmed the development but declined to be named.
“Yes it is true that Rafiq is joining Black Leopards as a free agent following the expiry of his contract on December 31 2021. The player impressed Leopards’ manager and the board during his one month trials last year. We all wish him well as he opens another chapter in his football career,” the insider said.
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.