Milosavljevic looking forward to Palestine tour

KARACHI: Pakistan football coach Zavisa Milosavljevic is looking forward to the national team’s participation in the Al Nakba International Tournament in Palestine, saying the event will help in their preparations for the AFC U-22 Cup that takes place in July.

The Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) has confirmed that the team will take part in the tournament in Palestine in May, in which 10 other countries are also due to take part.

Milosavljevic said that the upcoming tournament will help the team form a strategy and also give the players much-needed exposure. “I’m very excited because the team will finally get some international exposure,” the Serb told The Express Tribune. “I will be using the under-22 team players without any seniors because my target is to progress to the second round of the AFC U-22 Cup.

“I was extremely disappointed when our friendly matches were cancelled for February. But Palestine are a good side and I’m hopeful that we can beat them in May.”

However, according to the PFF Secretary Ahmed Yar Khan Lodhi, security is still a concern since the federation failed to get clearance to tour Palestine last year.

“I’m certain that we can make it to Palestine this time,” said Lodhi. “We are well-prepared and I have been assured by the authorities that we will get the clearance now.”

Published in The Express Tribune, March 5th, 2012.