The Zesh Rehman-led Pakistan football squad left for the Peace Cup 2013 yesterday, a tournament which will also feature Chinese Taipei and hosts Philippines in Bacolod.
Pakistan will begin their campaign at the invitational event on October 13, while Philippines and Chinese Taipei will play the opener today.
The Peace Cup will be Mohamed Shamlan’s first assignment as the national head coach.
Meanwhile, striker and now vice captain Kaleemullah said that the team was opting for an attacking style of game against their two opponents.
“We have five new players who will wear the national colours for the first time,” Kaleemullah told The Express Tribune.”We have a good combination of experience and energy in the team.
“Philippines will be our toughest competitor; they have fielded foreign-based players who train in Brazil so they will be a difficult side to beat. However at the same time, this tour will be a good experience for us and we’ll get the opportunity to improve.”
Philippines is ranked 141 in the world, while Pakistan will be the second strongest side, being in 170th spot in the Fifa rankings. Chinese Taipei are ranked in 175th place.
In the opening match of the event though, Pakistan will have an edge over Chinese Taipei, against whom they have won two out of three matches and drawn one since 2008. However, they have not played any match against the Philippines in the last 20 years.
The squad also includes Saqib Hanif, Muzammil Hussain, Mahmood Khan, Muhammad Ahmed, Ahsanullah, Muhammad Adil, Faisal Iqbal, Zainullah, Muhammad Bilal, Rizwan Asif, Bilawalur Rehman, Saddam Hussain and Syed Arif Hussain.
Published in The Express Tribune, October 11th, 2013.
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