Afghanistan,Pakistan to square off in friendly match today


The Afghan and Pakistani national football teams will square off in a friendly football match in Kabul on August 20 (today).

With conventional diplomacy failing to ease tense relations between neighbors Pakistan and Afghanistan, some think unconventional alternatives – especially football diplomacy – might do the job.

The Pakistan national football team left for Afghanistan today to play a one-off friendly match with Afghanistan national football team.
The Pakistan team led by captain Samar Ishaq flew to Kabul in the evening and would reach there the same even and play the friendly match on August 20.
“We are very enthusiastically waiting to play with Afghan National Football Team” said the President PFF Makhdoom Syed Faisal Saleh Hayat in his statement. He further added that “the match will not only strengthen the brotherly ties between both the neighboring Nations but will also help to promote football in both the countries”.
The team: Saqib Hanif, Muzammil Hussain, M. Hameed, Samar Ishaq, Kamran Khan, Muhammad Ahmed, Ahsanullah, Saddam Hussain, Muhammad Adil, Faisal Iqbal, Yasir Afridi, Zia Us Salam, Naveed Ahmed, Mohammad Riaz, Kaleemullah, Muhammad Mujahid, Saeed Ahmed.
Officials: Milosavljevic Zavisa Head Coach cum Manager, Shahzad Anwar Assistant Coach, Aslam Khan Goalkeeper Coach, Kamran Mehdi Physio / Assistant Manager.

“We support people-to-people exchange, including sports links that help build mutual confidence not only among the people but between states as well,” Foreign Office spokesman Aizaz Chaudry was quoted by a foreign news agency.

The Afghan and Pakistani national football teams will square off in a friendly football match in Kabul on August 20, the first such event to be hosted by Afghanistan in more than three decades.

“This is a very significant development on two counts,” Alam Zaib Safi, a Peshawar-based sports reporter, believes.

“First, Kabul is going to host an international football match. Secondly, it has chosen to play against Pakistan, which does not enjoy a comfortable diplomatic relationship with Afghanistan,” he explained.

“This means that the two countries are serious and are trying to normalize relations one way or the other,” Safi added. “This is good a development for both countries.”

The goodwill friendly coincides with an upcoming visit by Afghan President Hamid Karzai to Islamabad for talks with newly-elected Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and other Pakistani leaders.

Talks are expected to focus on the moribund peace process between Kabul and the Taliban, which began in June in Qatar but broke down after the Karzai regime objected to the hoisting of a Taliban flag above its coordination office in Doha.

Many saw Sharif’s election as the beginning of a new era of relations between the two neighboring countries.


  1. Pakistan national handball team is coming to tomorrow Afghanistan, will play against Afghanistan Hand Ball Team. iam with them… iam soo excited to see Kabul

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