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No chance for veterans in Flames

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By Isaac Salima:

TO CONTINUE PLAYING—Kondowe

Malawi national football team assistant Coach Peter Mponda has advised veteran players to accept the reality of not being selected for Flames engagements.

Some senior players in the TNM Super League have been questioning the Flames technical panel’s motives for continuing to sideline them despite their impressive performances.

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Players such as Essau Kanyenda, Fischer Kondowe and Joseph Kamwendo have been on top of their game for their clubs but Flames Coach Ronny van Geneugden has not given them a chance to prove themselves in national colours.

After a five-star display against Blue Eagles in the TNM Super League that also won him a Man-of-the- Match award, Kamwendo took a swipe at national team selectors for “holding grudges” against him and misguiding van Geneugden on player selection.

“I am not yet finished. It is some people who want me finished. If I am able to play like this, it means I have the energy to do well at the national team.

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“But some people, due to personal reasons, do not want some of us to be called for national duties. We are not happy to see our team losing games when we are still around. We need an opportunity to prove ourselves,” Kamwendo told the media.

But Mponda said the veteran players should just accept that they had their opportunity to help the team and it is now time for others to prove their worth.

“We have tried to give a chance to veteran players [in the national team] but results have been the same. This is now the time for youngsters. We may lose some games with these young players but the good thing is that we are building a team. The veterans had their time and they should accept that they are in the twilight of their careers,” he said.

The former Flames skipper also said the veterans should not be deceived by their club performance.

“We are talking of players who must play against teams such as Morocco and Cameroon. So if one is able to win Man-of-the-Match awards in local matches, it does not apply that they can do the same at international level,” Mponda said.

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