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‘Professionals’ to join Flames in Ethiopia

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By Mphatso Malidadi:

TO JOIN THE FLAMES IN ADDIS ABABA —Frank Banda (left) and Swini

Seven foreign-based Malawi national football team players are expected to join the rest of the squad in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, this evening en route to Yaoundé, Cameroon, for the Group B 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier.

The Flames are scheduled to leave the country this afternoon through Chileka Airport for the first of the two back-to-back matches against the Indomitable Lions set for Yaoundé on Friday.

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The return match will be played at Kamuzu Stadium in Blantyre on October 16.

Flames Coach Ronny van Geneugden named the Mozambique-based quartet of Charles Swini, Frank Banda, John Banda, Richard Mbulu and skipper Limbikani Mzava, and Gabadinho Mhango who ply their trade in South Africa.

Japan-based Jabulani Linje is also part of the final list.

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Football Association of Malawi Competitions and Media Manager Gomezgani Zakazaka said Gerald Phiri Jnr of South African Premier Soccer League side Bidvest Wits was left out of the squad due to an injury.

“The coach would have loved Gerald Phiri Jnr to be part of the squad but he is nursing an injury,” Zakazaka said.

The Flames defeated Comoros Islands 1-0 at Bingu National Stadium in their first group match but were thrashed 3-0 in their second against Morocco in Casablanca.

Results from the two games leave Malawi on third position in the group with three points behind leaders Cameroon, who have four, and second-placed Morocco. The North Africans are also on three points but with a better goal difference.

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