The Flames will in the next five days face Egypt in back-to-back 2023 AFCON Qualifiers with the first match set for Friday at 23 June Stadium in Cairo and the return fixture on Tuesday at the Bing National Stadium.
This is the third time that Flames are in the same AFCON qualification group with Egypt. The first one was in the 1994 Qualifiers while last time was for the 2010 qualifiers.
Before the 1994 qualifiers Malawi had played Egypt four times.
Malawi’s first encounter with Egypt was at the 1978 All Africa games in Algeria where Flames lost 4-1 with Kinnah Phiri scoring the consolation goal. Interestingly, despite the loss, Malawi still qualified to the next round after Libya were disqualified and Egypt withdrew due to injuries to their players.
The second meeting between the two sides was again at the All-Africa games in 1987 in Kenya. It was a last group fixture and Malawi needed a win to qualify for the knockout stages as we were tied with Ivory Coast with two points each, but with a better goal difference.
Goals from Young Chimodzi and substitute Ian Banda gave the Flames a historic 2-1 win over the Pharaohs and qualification to the knockout stages as group winners.
Two years later the teams met again in the 1990 FIFA World Cup qualifiers and the first leg at Civo Stadium in Lilongwe ended 1-1 with Peterkins Kayira scoring the Flames goal. The Pharaohs won the return leg 1-0 .
In the 1994 AFCON qualifiers, the Flames won the first match 1-0 at home in Blantyre courtesy of a Frank Mtawali’s lone strike. However, the Pharaohs won the return leg in Cairo 2-0.
Fifteen years elapsed before we were drawn against Egypt in the 2010 AFCON and World Cp join qualifiers. Chiukepo Msowoya jumped off the bench to score a memorable goal as the Flames beat Egypt 1-0 at the Kamuzu Stadium in June 2008 in the first leg. Two weeks later the Pharaohs once again continued their home ground dominance with a 2-0 victory.
A year later Flames and Egypt met in a friendly match for the first time as the the teams prepared for the 2010 AFCON finals. The match ended 1-1 and once again Msowoya came off the bench to save the Flames.
The last encounter between the two sides was in a friendly match in Alexandria in June 2015 and Flames current John Banda scored the consolation goal in a 2-1 defeat.
In total Malawi and Egypt have played 10 matches. In the three home matches the Flames managed two wins and one draw and no loss. The five away games in Egypt ended in one draw and four wins for the hosts.
Each team won one of the other two matches played in natural venues, both at All Africa Games,
Chimodzi, who is part of the Flames delegation in Cairo for tomorrow’s match as a Malawi National Council of Sports Board Member, leads in the appearance against Egypt after playing five games. Mabvuto Lungu also played five games but one as a substitute.
Gilbert Chirwa, Lawrence Waya and Joseph Kamwendo played in four matches while fourteen players featured in three games out of a total of the 69 players that played against Egypt.
Chiukepo Msowoya who featured in three games, all as substitutes leads the scoring segment with 2 goals while Ganizani Masiye and Swadick Sanudi managed to keep a keep a clean sheet each.
Msowoya was part of the provisional squad for the two matches but will not be available for selection due to an injury .
Compiled by : Mario Antoine