Friendly series: Probable Afghanistan visit on the cards [Express Tribune]

Friendly series: Probable Afghanistan visit on the cards [Express Tribune]

KARACHI: Pakistan is likely to host a friendly series with Afghanistan next month in order to give the side further international exposure.

The Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) will hold at least two matches with Afghanistan in Lahore or Islamabad in January.

According to PFF secretary Ahmed Yar Khan Lodhi, the tour dates will be finalised later as Afghanistan is interested in playing a lone friendly match in Islamabad, while the federation is looking to play two friendlies, with another in Lahore, as part of the tour.

“We are trying to hold finalise the series and the dates will be confirmed later,” Lodhi told The Express Tribune. “Afghanistan is certainly a better team than ours, but that is exactly the point.

“We want to bring the international sport to the country and provide opportunities for our players to improve, something we can’t achieve without playing with better teams.”

Meanwhile, assistant coach of the national side, Hassan Baloch, said that playing at the home-ground is a huge advantage for the team.

“Afghanistan is a very professional team,” he said. Their players train in Germany and they have a great style of playing,” said Baloch. “We are also trying to improve and at the moment, we need our players to perform well; even if they lose, they should go down fighting.”

Head coach Mohamed Shamlan will pick 40 new players from the ongoing Pakistan Premier Football League in order to increase the pool of players in the national camp.