PFF negotiating long-term deal with Graham Roberts

By Tabinda Siddiqi [Dawn]

KARACHI: The Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) is currently in negotiations with Graham Roberts over a long-term deal as the head coach of the national team.

“We are currently in the process of negotiating a deal with Graham Roberts. He is keen to stay in Pakistan as the national coach as he sees a lot of potential in the players and thinks Pakistan can do better at international level,” PFF’s marketing director Sardar Naveed Haider told on Tuesday.

The former Tottenham Hotspur and Chelsea player joined PFF in October as a coaching consultant on a two-month contract, which was financed by a UK-based sponsor.

Roberts’ main target with the national squad was the Asian Games, where the Under-23 team did not fare well, recording two defeats and one draw.

With the Olympic and World Cup qualifiers coming up in 2011, Roberts’ expertise could guide the national team to better performances.

“The PFF is keen on retaining his services for a longer period, given his vast experience as a player and a coach,” Haider said.

The PFF official informed that the federation has sought financial assistance from the government in order to meet Roberts’ demands.

“He (Roberts) has articulated his demands and we have written a letter to the prime minister.”

Roberts will remain with the PFF for another month, before his two-month contract runs out in December.