President Dr Arif Alvi has urged the need to incentivize the football players and promote football in the country by adopting international best practices in the field of football. He called for developing linkages with international partners and promoting public-private partnerships, besides providing better training facilities and coaching to the football players. He said that the FIFA-appointed Normalization Committee for the Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) should speed up its efforts to streamline the issues related to football affairs in the country.
The President expressed these views while talking to the members of Pakistan’s National Men’s and Women’s Football teams, at Aiwa-e-Sadr, today. The Chairman of the FIFA-appointed Normalization Committee (FNC), Mr Haroon Ahmed Malik, and members of the FNC were also present during the meeting.
Welcoming the athletes, the President said that the sport of Football was quite popular in Pakistan and there were millions of football fans in the country, adding that football should be promoted at the district and club levels. He advised the athletes to make their country proud through their performance and work for improving the country’s image as they were Pakistan’s ambassadors in the field of sports. He further remarked that he had high hopes from the players to lead Pakistan in regional and international competitions.
The President regretted that the internal politics within the Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) had affected its performance. He expressed the hope that with the help of the FIFA-appointed Normalization Committee, there would be a visible improvement in the performance of PFF.
Chairman of the FIFA-appointed Normalization Committee (FNC), Mr Haroon Ahmed Malik, briefed the President that over 7 million people in Pakistan played football, and said that FNC was making efforts to improve the functioning and administration of PFF through the FNC. He informed that Women’s National Team (WNT) played their first international game in 8 years and Men’s National Team (MNT) played their first international game in 4 years.
He further stated that so far almost 4600 clubs from 163 districts of the country had been registered and the documentation and physical scrutiny process would be completed within the given timelines. It was further told that MNT would participate in the 2026 FIFA World Cup qualifiers and WNT would play in the Olympics Qualifiers for Paris 2024 this year.—PR