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Tough times

Teams fail to buy players due to financial woes

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Albert Chigoga

As the domestic transfer window deadline looms, the majority of clubs in the TNM Super League have not bought any players.

The clubs have attributed the development to lack of financial muscle for bolstering their squads in the ongoing transfer window.

The transfer window closes on May 30 but there has been little movement on the market.

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Silver Strikers and Mighty Wanderers are just two of the clubs that have been active on the market.

The Central Bankers are on the verge of completing the signing of experienced midfielder Blessings Tembo from rivals Civil Service United, just days after registering another battle-hardened linkman Frank Banda.

Wanderers completed paperwork for the return of Yamikani Chester, who rejoined the club after the mutual termination of his contract with Czech Republic side MFK Vyskov.

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Silver Chief Executive Officer Thokozani Chimbali said most clubs were inactive on the transfer market due to financial constraints that have hit the game worldwide.

“In general terms, most clubs do not have disposable income to sign players. However, we, as a club, are happy with what we have done so far. We are close to signing our targets and things are looking good,” Chimbali said.

Karonga United have also been busy on the market having signed Josiah Duwa from Ntopwa FC.

The club is also on the verge of signing former Civil Service United and TN Stars midfielder Thoko Harrison.

Karonga General Secretary Ramsey Simwaka said it is sad that the financial status of most clubs does not allow them to buy players.

“The situation on the ground is that clubs do not have enough resources to sign players. Already, we are struggling to pay our players during this pandemic and forking out more money for buying players is not easy at all,” Simwaka said.

Recently, Bullets Coach Kalisto Pasuwa indicated that he would be looking for a defender and a midfielder as replacements for Charles Petro and Peter Banda who both play for Moldova champions Tiraspol Sheriff.

However, Bullets Chief Administrator Albert Chigoga said they were not desperate for new players.

“If the players we want are available on the market, we will go for them,” Chigoga said.

Eagles Chairperson Alexander Ngwala said they have no plans to beef up their squad.

“We have good players and we believe we will do well with them,” Ngwala said.

Local teams have been hit hard financially by the government’s restrictions on the number of spectators during matches.

Halfway through the first round of the elite league, matches were suspended as Covid cases peaked with the government restricting public gatherings to a maximum of 50.

Action later returned but spectators were still barred from patronizing matches.

The restrictions were later eased to 250 but stakeholders in the football sector asked the government for further consideration.

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