Inaugural National Futsal Championship: PFF approves Liaquat Gymnasium as venue

Lahore, 24 November : Pakistan Football Federation (PFF)’ President Makhdoom Syed Faisal Saleh Hayat has approved Liaquat Gymnasium Hall Islamabad for the first-ever National Futsal Championship from 21-25 December 2010. The players registered in Pakistan Premier League and PFF League will not be allowed to take part in the next month eight team show.

PFF is celebrating end of successful season with enthusiasm and jauntiness as the country’s ruling soccer body aimed to launch Futsal (A shorter or “T20 version” of Football) in its traditionally vigorous way in the country.

The rules of game create an emphasis on improvisation, creativity and technique as well as ball control and passing in small spaces. The pitch of game is made up of wood or artificial material, although any flat, smooth and non-abrasive material may be used. The length of the pitch is in the range of 38–42 m and the width is in the range of 18–25 m in international matches.

“PFF has set 10 December 2010 as last date for the event registration of four provinces and four regions for participation. It is clarified that no team would be accepted after the given deadline and the provinces/regions who will fail to send the names of teams to play in coming event before deadline would not be eligible to compete in the competition.”

In a letter addressed to eight affiliated units of Pakistan viz Football Associations of Sindh, Punjab, Khyber Pakhtoonkhawa, Balochistan, Islamabad, FATA, Gilgit Baltistan and Azad Jammu & Kashmir, PFF’s Secretary General Lt. Col. ® Ahmed Yar Khan Lodhi said: “ send names of your team Provinces/Regions latest by the 10 December 2010 deadline, failing which the clubs of your Provinces/Regions will not be eligible to participate in the said event.”

PFF Futsal Committee met and discussed the organisation of the National Futsal Championship on an annual basis to boost the popularity of the sport in Pakistan.

“The PFF chief said he was keen to see futsal being embraced by women and youth in a further fillip to the sport, None of our achievements would have been possible without dedication and strong leadership of PFF Chief,” added Lodhi.

Futsal match consists of two equal periods of 20 minutes. The length of either half is extended to allow penalty kicks to be taken or a direct free kick to be taken against a team that has committed more than five fouls. The halftime interval between the two halves cannot exceed 15 minutes

Futsal is played between two teams of five players, one of whom is the goal keeper Unlimited substitutes per team are permitted. Unlike some other forms of indoor football, the game is played on a hard court surface delimited by lines; walls or boards are not used. It is also played with a smaller ball with less bounce than a regular football.

“The youth is the future of the country and PFF planning has been designed to ensure we cater to each of the youths likes. Being a part of the FIFA family we assure to bring many events for the youth of Pakistan”. “Futsal is only the beginning of many of the shows planned for our valued footballers. As always PFF is striving to bring a smile to all segments of the football circles,” concluded Faisal.