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Fifa ban haunts DeMbare…Harare giants barred from Malawi pre-season tourney

File pic: Dynamos FC players

THE Football Association of Malawi (FAM) has barred Harare giants Dynamos from participating in the four-team pre-season tournament, which was scheduled to take place in March due to the country's suspension from the Fifa football family.

Nyasa Big Bullets had wanted the Glamour Boys, UD Songo from Mozambique and local rivals Mighty Mukuru Wanderers for the event.

But FAM turned down Bullets’ request to include the former Zimbabwean champions for the invitational competition.

Dynamos are currently trying to build a team that can compete for the title after parting ways with coach Tonderai Ndiraya, who guided the club to a third-place finish last season.

Herbert Maruwa replaced Ndiraya as the new gaffer and has the responsibility to lead the club to success after bringing in a number of new faces into the team.

It was expected that the pre-season trip to Malawi would help the team prepare for the upcoming season.

But the country's status on the international scene has come back to haunt Dembare

"We cannot grant Bullets the license because of the inclusion of Zimbabwe team Dynamos. The Fifa ban applies to all national teams and local clubs. It even applies to school teams," FAM competitions director Gomezgani  Zakazaka told Malawian newspaper The Nation.

"That is why Zimbabwe teams cannot participate in club competitions."

Zimbabwe was suspended from Fifa for third-party influence in the running of football matters in the country.

This was after the Sports and Recreation Commission (SRC) suspended the Zifa board led by Felton Kamambo in November 2021 over a litany of charges, including abuse of funds.

The Fifa suspension prohibits national teams and clubs from participating in international football competitions.

Champions FC Platinum and Chibuku Super Cup winners Bulawayo Chiefs will not be taking part in the Caf Champions League and the Caf  Confederation Cup respectively.

Indications show that efforts to ensure Zimbabwe returns to international football are going to intensify this year following the completion of the forensic audit and submission of the Zifa Restructuring Committee report late last year.

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