By Sports Reporter/Doha
Qatar coach Felix Sanchez has named 20 players who will form the Qatar squad taking part in the 23rd edition of the Gulf Cup in Kuwait from December 22 to January 5.
The squad trained yesterday in Doha and will play a friendly against Liechtenstein on December 14 before heading to Kuwait a few days later.
The squad is a mix of youth and experience with Al Sadd contributing five players and Al Duhail four.
The younger players will use the Gulf Cup experience to earn selection in the Qatar team for the AFC U-23 Championship to be held in China.
The tournament was shifted to Kuwait after FIFA lifted a two-year ban on the country earlier this week.
Qatar Football Association president Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa bin Ahmed al-Thani, who is also the head of the Arab Gulf Cup Football Federation (AGCFF), said while transferring the hosting rights to Kuwait that the Gulf Cup should not be hostage to politics as it is a celebration of football for fans in the region.
The AGCFF will meet in Doha tomorrow to discuss in detail the arrangements for the tournament following its transfer to Kuwait.
Qatar, who are the defending champions, have been preparing hard for the prestigious regional event, playing several friendlies over the past two months.
In November, they produced a fine performance against the Czech Republic before going won 2-1 and drew 1-1 with Iceland who have qualified for next year’s World Cup in Russia.
Qatar are placed in Group B of the tournament which also includes Iraq, Yemen and Bahrain, while Group A comprises Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Oman.
Kuwait have won the event a whopping 10 times ever since its inception in 1970 and this will be fourth time they will play hosts after having hosted it earlier in 1974, 1990 and 2003.
Squad: Saad al-Dosari, Hassan Haydous, Pedro Gomez, Musab al-Khader and Salem al-Hajri (Al Sadd); Almoez Ali, Bassam al-Rawi, Karim Boudiaf and Ismail Mohamed (Al Duhail); Mohamed Muntari (Al Ahli); Hamad al-Obaidi and Abdul Karim Salem al-Ali (Al Saliyah); Ahmed Fathi (Al Arabi); Mahdi Ali Osman Yahri (Al Gharafa); Asim Madibo, Akram Hassan Afif and Abdul Karim Hassan (KAS Eupen, Belgium); Ahmed Yasser Mohamadi and Ahmed Moin (Cultural y Deportiva Leonesa, Spain
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