Karachi: India and Pakistan will play a bilateral football series in the former’s den next month, the PFF said today.
The bilateral series will be the first between the two countries after a gap of nine years.
“The Pakistan team will visit India from August 16 to 21 and play matches on the 17th and 20th,” Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) secretary Colonel Ahmed Yar Lodhi told PTI.
“It is a big step forward for sporting relations between the two countries and also for Pakistan football because India is more developed in this sport than us,” he said.
“The good thing is that India is also keen to play against us and agreed to this series.
“The last time the two countries were involved in a bilateral series was in 2005 which Pakistan won on goal average. This series can be considered as a return visit by Pakistan to India,” Lodhi added
Asked about plans to host bilateral matches with India in England with the support of international sponsors, Lodhi said the project was close to finalisation but the sponsors backed out at the last moment.
“The same fate met us when we planned a triangular football series in England last year with India and Bangladesh,” he said.
“Pakistan will also be playing a series against Bahrain from August 22 to 30 there, which shows that the PFF is doing its best for the game.”
Lodhi said Pakistan would also host the first ever SAARC Women’s Football Championship in September this year.
Lodhi made it clear that the planned series in August was obviously subject to clearance from the respective governments.
“But the federations are on board now,” he said.