Saturday, July 31, 2010

Exclusion of football team from Asian Games widely criticized

Old PFF logoImage via Wikipedia
ISLAMABAD, Jul 29: Former national football captain Muhammad Naveed Chaudhry Thursday criticised the decision of Pakistan Olympic Association not to include football team in the Pakistan contingent for the coming November’s 16th Asian Games.
He also took to task the officials of Pakistan Football Federation for the recent poor performances of the national team, leading to the difficult decision by POA to exclude football from the Asiad.
“The exclusion of football team from the Asiad would make a negative impact on the team and will not boost the morale of the players”, he said. Naveed recalled that the performance of the team was not at all bad in the 15th Asian Games in 2006 at Doha (Qatar) though it narrowly lost its matches against North Korea and Japan.
Besides, he said, Pakistan team secured gold medal in South Asian Games in 2006 when Salman Sharida of Bahrain was the Coach. He said that departure of Sharida after differences with the PFF resulted in a string of poor performances by the national side after 2006 as the Federation failed to find another coach of his calibre.
Naveed who was the captain of the national team in 1986 in the Asian Games at Seoul (South Korea) said that Pakistan team was now ranked last among 8 countries of South Asia, languishing behind countries like Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Maldives and India. He said that despite the grant of Rs 20 million by the government, the team couldn’t produce good enough results to secure a berth in the Asian Games.
He said PFF officials had made a laughing stock of themselves. “These officials issued a statement that Pakistan could qualify for the World Cup in 2022. Now if you cannot even figure in the Asian Games, how come you boast of qualifying for World Cup”.

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