Palestine announce football team for Pakistan tour: Lahore Test on 1 March

Lahore, 2 Feb: Palestine football team coach Moussa Bezaz announced 30-player squad for bilateral series between two countries. Palestine will arrive on 27 February and will be lined up for the first match at Lahore’s Punjab Stadium on 1 March, followed by Second Test on 4 Match at Karachi’s Peoples Sports Complex. Pakistan will reciprocate by visiting Palestine during April to appear in the third and fourth Test of the first ever series between two nations.It was 60th FIFA Congress 2010 in South Africa last year, during which Pakistan Football Federation (PFF)’s President Makhdoom Syed Faisal Saleh Hayat, also AFC Executive Committee member, met with Palestinian Football Association (PFA)’s President Al Rajoub Jibril and they both agreed to give their National teams training/preparation in 2011 with bilateral series for coming AFC Challenge Cup, World Cup, Olympics Qualifiers and SAFF/WAFF Championship.“ Palestine used to play WAFF Championship, an international tournament for selected West Asian countries and territories. Pak- Palestine series would be an historic occasion on Pakistan soil despite all the relations between two nations over the years.” said Faisal who is also FIFA and World Disciplinary Committee member and Chairman AFC Disciplinary Committee.The 30 players of Palestine will be Abdallah Alsidawi. Mohammed  Shbair, Asem  Abuassi, Fahed Alfakhouri, Saed Abusalim, Abdalla  Almasri, Mohamed  Eid, Samer Amin, Ihab Abujazar, Iyad  Gharqoud, Ahmed  Mahajna, Shadi Aliwisat, Khaled Mahdi, Haytham Theeb, Murad  Said, Hussam  Abusalah, Sulaiman  Obaid, Khader Abuhammad, Ashraf   Alfawaghra, Hussam Wadi, Hisham Salhi, Husam Ziada, Hani Abubelal, Ismail Al Amour, Mohammed  Jebreen, Shatrit Mohamedali, Mali Kaware, Ayman Alhendi, Jamal Aliwisat, Atef Abubelal     
The Administrative and Technical Staff of Paletine team will be comprized of Ibrahim Alaqaq, Abdalfatah Arar, Bezaz Moussa, Nasser Barakat, Ould Noureddine, Salameh Al Grouf, Mohammed Khawaja, Mustafa Meshaati and Raed Issa.

It will be first international football match at Lahore after Pakistan-Iraq clash in 19th World Cup Qualifiers 2007 while

Karachi’s football followers will get a chance to witness a FIFA-recognized international game at their own soil after a lapse of more than five years when the Palestine football team will face Pakistan in the second of four Test series at Peoples Sports Complex on 4 March 2011. Last time, Karachi hosted the international match on 1 March 2006 when Pakistan faced UAE in 14th Asian Cup Qualifiers.

The 1st March Lahore clash will be third between the two teams in soccer history.  Ibrahim Munasarah and Mohammed Al-Jeish were scorers when both the teams occupied the Doha field on 2 April 2000 for the first-ever tie between the two in 12th Asian Cup QR, with Palestine winning 2-0 against Pakistan, coached by John Henry Layton and David Burns. Six year later, Palestine were 3-0 winners on 18 February 2006 when Pakistan was in Manama, Bahrain for 14th Asia Cup QR preparation under former coach Salman Sharida (Bahrain), now the coach of his own country in recently-concluded 15th Asian Cup. Palestine was led by Israeli-Arab coach Azmi Nasser on both occasions. But Azmi’s life was sadly cut short after suffering a heart-attack a year later. Palestine netted  through Fahed Attal (2) and Fahdi Salim at Bahrain’s National Stadium.