Football: Investment is paying off, says PFF

Published: May 20, 2012

Pakistan went behind in the 24th minute and the score stayed 1-0 at the interval. PHOTO: FILE

KARACHI: 

Pakistan under-22 crashed out of the Al-Nakba International Football Tournament despite a 2-2 draw against the Palestinian national side in Nablus.

Needing to win this match to qualify for the quarter-finals after a stalemate against Vietnam, Pakistan went behind in the 24th minute and the score stayed 1-0 at the interval.

Kaleemullah equalised in the 64th minute but Palestine took the lead again with Mohamed Halmal scoring his second just a minute later. Faisal Iqbal gave Pakistan a share of the points with a last-ditch effort.

Federation content despite exit

Despite the draw, Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) Secretary Ahmed Yar Khan Lodhi was disappointed with the team’s show against Vietnam.

“We should’ve won the first match,” Lodhi told The Express Tribune. “Vietnam’s an easy side compared to Palestine. But I can’t complain because the team conceded and then came back into the game. I must appreciate that. At least they scored goals.

“For now, I’m satisfied with the team’s show because after sending the team to different countries and spending over a million rupees
on these tours, we are expecting improvement and we want to give them enough exposure so that they can
perform against the best teams in Asia in the AFC Under-22 Championship qualifiers.”

Lodhi added that the federation was trying to arrange another tour before the qualifiers that take place from June 23 till July 3 in Saudi Arabia.

The team returns to Lahore today while the camp for the qualifiers start in Lahore after a four-day rest.

Published in The Express Tribune, May 20th, 2012.

Reader Comments (2)

  • Atif
    May 20, 2012 - 3:02AM

    Atleast add some game pic. Weldon pakistan team. At last you ended up with some field goals after a long time.

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  • May 20, 2012 - 1:59PM

    @Atif:
    You can watch the highlights of the Pakistan-Palestine draw here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8onASlCaKBY&feature=youtu.be

    More work needs to be done, especially in domestic football. It needs a major overhaul with a proper vision and commitment that can help professionalise football in Pakistan.

    PFF should not rest on these laurels just yet.

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