The Football Association of Malawi (FAM) has assured players in the country that their safety from the COVID-19 will be the main priority when football resumes.
Speaking during a consultative meeting with the Elite League Clubs captains and the Football Players Association, FAM President Walter Nyamilandu said the association has put in place a detailed medical protocol to ensure that players are protected from the pandemic.
Nyamilandu said FAM treasures the players as they are the heart and the soul of the game, and that is why they accorded them an audience as one of the key stakeholders in the football restart programme.
“You are the main actors of the game and as FAM we are more interested in your day to day lives. After meeting all key stakeholders there was need to have an audience with you as well as we continue to get ideas on how best we can restart football in a very safe manner.
“We have come up with protocols that will cover the whole process from the start of trainings to match days with emphasis on your safety,” said Nyamilandu.
The players said they are struggling financially as some clubs have stopped paying their staff while others are receiving half pay.
Some National Team players expressed fears of match fitness for international matches as the Flames are expected to return to AFCON Qualifiers in November.
Flames captain John Banda hailed FAM for granting them an audience saying the players are satisfied with the football restart roadmap.
“We are very happy that FAM and Sulom met us. As players, we felt that we were left behind because FAM has met a number of football stakeholders but was yet to meet us.
“There is a lot at stake, our careers, national team performance, and Football future. So there was need for us to have an idea of what is going on through this interaction ” said Banda.
Football Players Association (FPA) Jimmy Zakazaka commended FAM for the detailed football resumption roadmap and has since urged players to join the association if they are to remain united.
“We applaud FAM and Sulom for giving us hope that the game will return in the safest manner.
“I also want to take this opportunity to encourage all players to join the FPA which is the uniting factor that will enable us speak with one voice to relevant authorities,” said Zakazaka
FAM suspended all association football activities on March 20, 2020 due to the COVID-19 and has for the past months been holding football restart consultative meetings with various football stakeholders.
Source: Football Association of Malawi