Wednesday, September 15, 2010

WAFF Training camp underway

Palestine has just completed its first two days of preparation for the WAFF tournament with 21 players participating in the Al-Ram camp. One notable absentee is Fahed Attal who attempted to cross into the West Bank by land numerous times, only to be turned away with no reason given by the Israeli Occupying Authority. As a result, Attal was unable to visit his hometown of Qalqilya and spend Eid with his family and has subsequently missed out on training with the WBPL players.

Meanwhile, in Gaza, Ahmed Keshkesh presented Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh with a Wehdat Jersey. Kehskesh is currently taking some time off and will meet up with the rest of the team on September 22nd (All five based International players will join the camp on this date) in Amman. His club team will take advantage of the stoppage in league play by playing a friendly in Gaza against Riyadi Gaza. Wehdat's Croatian manager, Dragan, sees the friendly as an opportunity to keep match fitness at a high level amongst the players not participating in the WAFF tourney.

In other news, the Olympic squad is also taking advantage of the international break by meeting up to prepare for the upcoming Asian Games and Olympic Qualifying tournament. They'll be in training starting from September 22nd to October 1oth. Olympic Team Manager Mokhtar "Dinosaur" Talili has also arranged for the team to play five practice matches against WBPL clubs during this time period. Twenty players have been called to take part in preparations the two most notable are (and probably could have been in Bezaz WAFF squad):

Nadim Al-Barghouthi (Al-Bireh):
Represented the senior team at 2010 Challenge Cup Qualifiers in Nepal and also received a call-up last month for the Mauritania friendly. Will be asked to anchor the defence and lead from the back.

Abdelhamid Abu Habeeb (Balata):
An emerging midfield talent who notched up two goals during the Yasser Arafat Cup and is a big reason why (he has three goals in four games in the league) newly promoted Balata are top of the table.

Talili's Olympic Squad: Daud Al-Radaideh, Tawfiq Ali, Jamal Safaqa, Ahmed Salameh, Abdelhamid Abu Habeeb, Ahmed Shubtieh, Hamezeh Wahdan, Ali Al-Khateeb, Abd El-Salameen, Thaer Qaraeen, Amjad Zidane, Mohammed Khweis, Jehad Saqr, Khaled Salem, Mohammed Abadi, Sajed Krakrah, Nadeem Al-Barghouthi, Mustafa Abu Quq, Aladdin Yameen