Pakistan will open their campaign at the South Asian Football Federation (Saff) Championship against arch-rivals India today in Kathmandu.
Pakistan is placed in Group A of the tournament with defending champions India, hosts Nepal and Bangladesh. The national side has been preparing for the championship in Kathmandu for a month.
The Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) called foreign-based players Adnan Ahmed, former Fulham defender Zesh Rehman, Hassan Bashir, Yousuf Butt and Yacoob Butt to strengthen the line-up after the team’s dismal performance in a 3-0 friendly match against Afghanistan last month.
Coach Shehzad Anwar said that the opening match against India will set the tone for Pakistan in the tournament and with Bahrain’s Mohamed Shamlan as the new head coach, the squad has a new strategy for the championship.
India are currently ranked at 145 in the Fifa rankings compared to Pakistan on 167. The match will start at 1745.
Published in The Express Tribune, September 1st, 2013.
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