A Brief Guide to Malawi Football And Its Popularity


While the world of football spans the entire globe, most of us tend to stick to following Western football. And while all the attention those European clubs get is well deserved, there are others outside of the standard Italian or UK teams that deserve their time in the sun. As such, today we’ll be taking a look at and learning more about football in Malawi.

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The Popularity of Football in Malawi

Nowadays, football is considered to be the most prevalent sport in Malawi. This can be even seen through platforms such as Premier Bet Malawi, which enjoy plenty of popularity. Such online betting sites typically include highlights and odds from both local and international sports, including football. 

This love for the sport comes from its long-standing history in the country. Football in Malawi, formerly known as Nyasaland, was originally introduced by the British who colonized the country in 1891. But even after gaining independence in 1964, the sport continued spreading throughout the entire country, becoming a favorite pastime among the population.

The influence of the British was evident even through the fact that the first full-time coach of the national team, Ron Meades, was a British national. Overall, the full history behind football in Malawi is deep, and should you be interested we’d recommend checking out A History of Malawi and Nyasaland Football by Mario Antoine to gain further understanding. 

If you’re wondering who he is, well, he served as a Board Member of the Malawi National Council of Sports making him a great source. Moreover, the ex-player-coach, Brian Griffin, also provided plenty of insights along with former national team players like Mustafa Munshi and Young Chimodzi.

Football in Malawi

The governing body is the Football Association of Malawi, formally known as the Nyasaland Football Association, which was created in 1938. The top football division in Malawi is called the Super League of Malawi, or TNM Super League, and it was formed in 1986. 

Here, sixteen clubs can be found on the list, and it works in a similar way as to other leagues. They have a promotion and relegation process dependent on match results played between April and December. At the moment of writing, the champions are the FCB Nyasa Big Bullets, who also have the current record for the most wins with 17 titles. A win signifies that the team qualifies for the CAF Confederation Cup, where they will play against other African teams. 

When it comes to the Malawi national football team, formerly called the Nyasaland national football team, they may not have that many wins under their belt, but this hasn’t stopped them from trying again and again. In fact, it is this very persistence that has resulted in them achieving their best result fairly recently in 2021 by getting to the second round of the Africa Cup of Nations.

Photo by Fachry Zella Devandra on Unsplash

There’s something extra satisfying about enjoying a good football match with an underdog, and if you’re like us, cheering for them. So while Malawi football might not be as recognized as English football, it doesn’t mean that their matches are any less entertaining. So, if you haven’t had the chance to enjoy viewing one of their games, perhaps it’s time to change that today.


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