by Alam Zeb Safi
KARACHI: Canada-based young midfielders of Pakistan’s origin Adel Rehman and Naved Rehman will join Pakistan football team camp which will begin at the City School, Lahore, on Tuesday (tomorrow).
“Both Adel and Naved will arrive on Tuesday and will be tested in the camp,” an official of Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) told ‘The News’ on Sunday.“They both have played in the Slovakia second-tier league and we will check them,” the official added.
Born in Germany, they grew up playing for the Brampton Youth Soccer Club in Brampton.If found good it would be a welcome addition to the Pakistan team which has resumed its international stint this summer following over three years of inactivity due to legal issues.
The camp is being held to prepare the national team for its international friendly against Palestine to be held on November 15 in Palestine.Pakistan’s Brazilian coach Jose Antonio Nogueira has arrived in the Punjab capital after spending some time with his family in Sao Paulo. He had gone on leave after around a six-month duty as Pakistan’s coach during which the nation also returned to international circuit by featuring in the Asian Games and SAFF Cup held in Indonesia and Dhaka respectively.
Brazilian trainer Jose Portella was also scheduled to arrive late Sunday night along with Pakistan’s colts who finished as runners-up in the Under-15 SAFF Cup which concluded in Kathmandu on Saturday.
Besides the Canadian brothers, Denmark-based Hassan Bashir, Mohammad Ali and gloveman Yousuf Butt, and England-born professional defender Zeeshan Rehman are also expected to join Pakistan’s camp a few days before the outfit’s departure for Palestine.
“Yes, we want them to come and we all will move together,” the official said.As many as 30 players have been invited to the camp. “The team also has a few fresh faces as we want to test them,” the official said.
The match against Palestine will be a real test for Nogueira’s charges. Palestine are getting top practice as they have been playing international friendlies consistently.Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) is also trying to manage a few more matches for the national brigade.
Pakistan will field its Under-22 team in the next year’s Olympic qualifiers to be held in March and the senior team will play in the World Cup qualifiers next summer.Pakistan will also send its side to the South Asian Games to be held in Nepal in March.
The Olympic qualifiers will begin on March 18, the same day the South Asian Games finish.“If we reach the final of the South Asian Games we can then file a request with the AFC to revise our schedule in the Olympic qualifiers,” the official said.
Some leading sides of the Premier League will not be able to get the services of their key players for a few days due to Pakistan’s scheduled game against Palestine. Representing Pakistan for the international friendly against Palestine won’t be an issue for the foreign-based players as it is being held on FIFA Day.