Ronny Van Geneugden wants to monitor foreign-based players


Despite the Flames’ back-to-back defeats and a comical display against Madagascar in Saturday’s African Nations Championship (Chan) qualifier, Malawi Coach, Ronny Van Geneugden, is calm and optimistic that he is the right person to turn around the Flames’ fortunes.

Still hunting for his first win in three games as the Flames gaffer, the Belgian has made a slow start to his career and now there is a mammoth task ahead in the Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) qualifiers.

In the Afcon qualifiers, the Flames were drawn alongside reigning African champions Cameroon, Morocco and the Comoros Islands.


Under his reign, alongside Gerald Phiri Senior, the Flames have failed to score a goal in three consecutive games—similar to the way Malawi Under-20 National Football Team struggled at the Cosafa Youth Championship in South Africa under the latter’s reign last year.

But in a post-match reaction on Saturday, Geneugden was calm when outlining his plans for the Flames assignments in Afcon.

“Our plan is to win most of the games in Afcon qualifiers. The league starts next week and I hope to watch most of the games. I also want to watch the players who play outside Malawi to make a strong selection,” Geneugden said after the 1-0 loss to Madagascar at Bingu National Stadium.


Surely, pressure has started mounting on the Belgian and his backroom staff to start delivering the goods.

Against Madagascar, the Belgian played three strikers—Ishmael Thindwa, Manase Chiyesa and Binwell Katinji—but once again they misfired.

Geneugden was unhappy with the lack of the killer punch upfront.

“When you are playing at home in front of the fans, you must score. We played three strikers with high wingers but we played too many long balls,” he added.

Football Association of Malawi (Fam) General Secretary, Alfred Gunda, yesterday said the association would look into the coach’s recommendations once submitted.

“He has talked about monitoring foreign-based players and there are several ways of monitoring them,” he said.

Most of the Flames’ players are based in Mozambique and South Africa.

The Flames face a tight schedule in June and July when taking part in the Cosafa Castle Cup from June 25 to July 9 in South Africa.

In the same June, Malawi will also kick-start the Afcon qualifiers against Comoros Island.

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