Football Association of Malawi (FAM) has directed that from next season, TNM Super League clubs will be required to have women’s teams as part of club licensing.
But some clubs that we spoke to yesterday said the move is not viable.
So far, only four of the 16 top-flight clubs, namely Nyasa Big Bullets, Civil Service United, Kamuzu Barracks and Moyale FC have women’s football teams.
FAM licensing and compliance manager Casper Jangale said in an interview yesterday the decision follows a resolution by the Confederation of African Football (CAF) that all national league clubs should have women’s teams.
He said: “This will be a requirement as per CAF’s resolution. It is either the clubs should have a women’s team or partner with one.
“If they don’t, then they will not be issued with licences.”
On the viability of the move considering the timing and resources, Jangale said: “Whether they will manage or not is another thing, but we are setting standards aimed at developing our game as per CAF requirements.
“If they cannot afford to own a women’s team, at least they can go into partnership.”
Mighty Mukuru Wanderers, Karonga United and Mighty Waka-Waka Tigers yesterday said the move is not financially viable while Silver Strikers said they were not aware of the arrangement.
Said Wanderers president Thomson Mpinganjira: “As you are aware, as a regulatee, Wanderers have to comply.
“Since this is not in our 2023 budget, we may not meet this target by the set deadline and this extends to the CAF competition as well and, therefore, no CAF competition as well for us.
“The notice is too short and the budgets were done and approved in November and December 2022.”
The business mogul and philanthropist said in normal situations, such major changes are made and announced at least six months in advance.
He said: “Everyone knows that clubs are struggling financially even just to pay players and other staff.
“It is also normal to put up transitional arrangements and there are none.”
Tigers general secretary Akuzike Kafwamba said much as they would love to have a women’s team, they would be stretched as their resources are already spread.
He said: “We would rather dedicate the available resources into existing requirements.
“That said, the period is too short. A team doesn’t just come out, you need to come up with structures and the question would be do we have time? I do not think so.
“Even partnering a team requires investment. So, it should not just be about the requirements, but we also have to look at the demands.”
Karonga United general secretary Ramzey Simwaka said the move is practically impossible for now.
He said: “For a team like ours, we do not have a sponsor and we are already stretched by running reserve and youth teams.
“FAM should not just accommodate anything comin g from CAF. They have to analyse whether it is workable considering the local envioroment.