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‘Patrick Mabedi, Msakakuona deserve Flames’ roles’

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Malawi National Football Team’s interim coach, Nsanzuwrimo Ramadhan, has justified his choice of Blue Eagles’ mentor, Derklerk Msakakuona, and former Flames captain, Patrick Mabedi, as the Flames’ assistant co-coaches.

“The first thing is trust. You need someone you can trust. Most of the players also come from South African clubs and is based there,” Ramadhan said when announcing his 27-member provisional squad on Tuesday in Blantyre.

“Patrick also worked with the coach I respect so much, Muhsin Ertugral, at Mpumalanga Black Aces. I believe he learnt a lot. Patrick was also a coach in the Premier Soccer League for a season while with Moroka Swallows and it is an achievement at that level.”

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The South Africa- based Mabedi said he was weighing his options on his club coaching career after receiving offers. Ertrugral is coaching Orlando Pirates.

“I had a chance to be an assistant coach at Pirates, but I played for Kaizer Chiefs and I could not go to Pirates out of respect,” said Mabedi last week.

Ramadhan also said Msakakuona has proved his worth by guiding the Malawi Under-17 National Football Team to 2016 Cosafa Youth Cup bronze medal in Mauritius last month.

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“His club has also finished on top of the Super League first round. I have worked with him. I watched him train the Under-17. I am convinced that he is a good coach. We also want the young players to develop with the same philosophy when graduating into the Flames,” the interim coach added.

Ramadhan replaced his former boss, Ernest Mtawali, amid reports that their working relationship was strained. Some questioned the imposing of Ramadhan on Mtawali who he coached in the national team.

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