Football Association of Malawi (FAM) has fired Flames Head Coach Meck Mwase and has since replaced him with Marian Mario Marinica, who was employed by the association as Technical Director last year.
Mwase was dismissed after a 1st Quarterly Meeting by FAM which was held on 9th April, 2022 at Sunbird Nkopola Lodge in Mangochi.
During the meeting, the country’s soccer governing body resolved to appoint Marinica as the Head Coach of the Malawi Men’s National Football Team after the committee was “impressed” with the performance of the Flames at the Africa Cup of Nations finals in January in which the team reached the Round of 16 after they finished the group stages as one of the four best placed teams.
According to FAM, Marinica will now cease to be the Technical Director and will be offered a new contract for his new role.
“The Committee resolved to appoint Technical Director Marian Mario Marinica as the Head Coach of the Malawi Men’s National Football Team. This was arrived at after the Committee was impressed with the performance of the National Team at the Africa Cup of Nations finals in Cameroun in January under Marinica as Caretaker Head of Technical Panel and resolved to give him full mandate.”
“Marinica will cease to be Technical Director and will sign a new contract for his new role in due course. Among others, Marinica will choose his own backroom staff,” reads part of the statement signed by FAM’s General Secretary Alfred Gunda.
FAM further said the body will engage Malawi Government on redeployment Mwase who has a running contract till April next year.
“Flames Coach Meck Mwase has been relieved of his duties and FAM will engage the Malawi Government on redeploying the former Flames Captain for the rest of his contract which expired in April next year,” continued the statement.
Meanwhile, FAM has announced the hiring of Benjamin Kumwenda as the new Technical Director, replacing Marinica.
“The Committee resolved to appoint Technical Development Officer Benjamin Kumwenda as the new Technical Director to replace Marinica. He holds a CAF A Coaching License and with over 20 years of experience in coaching and coach education,” says the statement.
Mwase became the third local coach to qualify the team to Afcon finals after Henry Moyo in 1987 and Kinnah Phiri in 2010.
However, soon after taking the team to Afcon, he performed badly during Qatar 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifiers in which the team finished with three points from six games.
And a month before Afcon, FAM made Marinica an interim coach, a development which signified the end of Mwase’s era as Flames Coach.