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7 March, 2021 08:16:39 PM
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Hope dashed for Bangladesh to play WC Qualifiers at home

Md Anwar Ullah
Hope dashed for Bangladesh to play WC Qualifiers at home

Bangladesh will have to play their remaining three home matches of the World Cup 2022 and the Asia Cup Qualifiers at a neutral or central venue as Afghanistan decided not to play in Dhaka. 

The schedules of the matches have already been fixed between June 03 and June 15 but the venue is yet to be decided.

It is very much unfortunate for Bangladesh as they don’t hold out much hope of playing only one match at home out of the eight matches.

Bangladesh though played their all the away assignments but fell victim to COVID-19 pandemic as they will be deprived of the home advantage when they will have to play their home matches at away ground.

Bangladesh Football Federation (BFF) left no stone unturned to play matches in their home against Afghanistan, India and Oman. BFF specially, tried heart and soul to play the match against Afghanistan on home ground when they applied to the AFC and made a frenetic effort to convince Afghanistan but making all their efforts went in vain as Afghanistan overlooked the requests. 

Abu Nayeem Shohag, general secretary of the BFF talked to the Independent on Friday about whether any possibility is left for Bangladesh to play their three home matches on home ground.

“To be honest, there is no hope left for us to play the match against Afghanistan at home, as finally they responded negatively to our letter regarding staging of the match in Bangladesh.” said Shohag.

“The AFC have already finalised the schedule for the matches from June 03 to 15. Had the matches been played at home then the schedule would have been on March 25 but because of Afghanistan’s decision we will play the matches from June 03 to 15,” added Shohag. 

“But the central or neutral venue (will be settled very soon), I think venue might be either Qatar or Oman,” Shohag revealed.

“As the match schedule has been deferred, we will have a gap and we decided to play an invitational tournament in Nepal and replied positively to ANFA invitation. The three-nation tournament will involve Bangladesh, Kyrgyzstan and host Nepal and going to take place from March 22 to 30 in Kathmandu,” Shohag replied to a query. 

Meanwhile, the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 and the Asia’s flagship national team competition – the AFC Asian Cup China 2023 preliminary joint qualification were revised for several times since early 2020 due to the embryonic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and travel and subsequent quarantine restrictions in several participating member countries.

However, after a long trouble AFC rescheduled the match dates and venues of Group D and F going to take place on March 25 and 30 but the dates of the matches of Group E, with Bangladesh, India, Afghanistan, Oman and Qatar have been deferred for June at a central venue.

To select the central venue to hold the matches, the AFC has sent invitation to member associations to host their respective group matches in a centralized format and will confirm and communicate in due course.
 

BK

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Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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