Oman football icon Ali al Habsi made a comeback as the Sultanate head coach Erwin Koeman announced on Wednesday the list of players for the upcoming matches against Afghanistan and Qatar in the combined qualification for the World Cup Qatar 2022 and AFC Asian Cup China 2023.
The list also saw return of some senior players including Ali Salim al Nahar, Esam al Subhi, Arshad al Alawi and Fahmi Dorbin. The selection of these players were made after the Dutchman observed them during the three previous rounds of Omantel League and Dhofar and Al Nasr games at the Arab Club Championship.
Al Habsi, who returned recently to English football league with West Bromwich Albion FC, will be beside Fayez al Rushaidi, Ahmed al Rawahi, Mohammed al Musalami, Ali al Busaidi, Ahmad Mubarak Kanu, Al Mundhir al Alawi, Abdul Aziz al Muqbali, Fahmi Durbin, Ahmed al Kaabi, Harib al Saadi, Raed Ibrahim, Mohammed al Ghafri, Mohammed Faraj, Abdul Aziz al Ghailani, Yassin al Sheyadi, Mohammed al Ghassani, Mohsin al Ghassani, Imran al Heidi, Ali Salem, Mohsin Jawhar and Esam al Subhi.
The list of players unveiled at the press meet in Seeb Sports Stadium was a mix of experience and youth which was opted by coach Koeman and his technical staff.
The Sultanate team players will gear up for the Afghanistan match which is scheduled for October 10, through a camp in Muscat after the completion of fourth week of Omantel League in this weekend. Then, the national team will travel to Doha to take on Qatar on October 15.
Koeman affirmed the importance of having mixture of youth and experienced players in the squad. “Ali is one of the well-known players. I was observing him. Ali has vast experience and the national team needs him,” the Dutchman added.
“All the new players made it to the team based on their good performance with their respective clubs. I feel a series of players delivered top technical standards during the matches in the Omantel League. It is essential to give them slots in the national team. To name a few are Esam al Subhi, Ali Salim and Arshad al Alawi,” Koeman concluded.
Oman commenced their campaign at the World Cup qualification with a crucial 2-1 win against India in northeastern Indian city of Guwahati.