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Oman U23 coach picks players for AFC qualifiers preparation

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The Oman under-23 national team coach, Akram Habrish, has unveiled the roster of 26 players who will participate in the second camp, scheduled to take place from May 20 to May 31. This camp is a vital part of the team's preparations for upcoming competitions, notably the West Asia tournament from June 10 to 22 and the qualifiers for the AFC U23 Asian Cup Qatar 2024.

Following a week-long camp focused on testing new talent and assessing their performance, the newly announced list consists mostly of players who took part in the Qatar International Friendly Championship in March.

Among the notable additions are Maitham bin Ali al Ajmi, Asaad bin Tariq al Balushi, Al Faraj bin Mubarak al Kiyoumi, Ayman bin Akram al Nabhani, Huthaifa bin Hamad al Maamari , Muti' bin Juma al Saadi and Nasser bin Sultan al Rawahi. Mohammad bin Abdulhakim al Hatami, Abdullah bin Sabah al Habsi, Abdullah bin Mohammad al Filaiti, Salim bin Habib al Abdulsalam, Khalid bin Ali al Ghatrifi, Salim bin Juma al Dawdi, Abdullah bin Hadid al Mukhaini and Omar bin Nasser al Salti, as well as Mazin bin Saleh Zayed, Mulham bin Yousef al Sunaidy, Saeed bin Masoud al Salami, Nibras bin Saeed al Maashari and Ahed bin Al Habashi al Mashaikhi. Additionally, Abdulmajeed bin Hafez al Balushi, Mohammad bin Abdulhakim Bait Subeea, Mohammad bin Mikhlif Bait Mustaheel, and Mohammad bin Mousa al Hinai have been included in the list.

In related news, the Asian Football Confederation has designated 11 countries to host the AFC Asian Cup Under-23 qualifiers, which will take place from September 4 to 12 during the Fifa international match days. The host countries include Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Thailand, Vietnam, Indonesia, South Korea, China, Bahrain, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, and Kuwait. These teams will be divided into groups during the draw ceremony.

The teams will be categorised into four levels based on their performance in the qualifiers and the previous edition of the championship held in Uzbekistan in 2022. In mid-April, the Asian Football Confederation reached out to national federations to express their interest in hosting the qualifiers. Seven teams from the host countries will be placed in the first level, including Saudi Arabia, Uzbekistan, South Korea, Vietnam, Jordan, Thailand, Bahrain, Kuwait, and Tajikistan. Indonesia will be placed in the third level, while China will be in the fourth level.

The draw ceremony for the qualifiers will be held at the AFC headquarters in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, on May 25. The ceremony will involve the participation of 44 teams, which will be divided into 11 groups. The first-place team from each group will secure qualification for the finals of Qatar 2024, and the four best second-placed teams will also advance, along with host nation Qatar.

Notably, for the first time in the tournament's history, the East and West regions will be merged during the qualifiers. Oman national team will be placed in the third level before the draw due to their non-qualification in the previous tournament. The first three teams will earn a spot in the Paris Olympics in the summer of 2024, while the fourth-placed team will compete in a global play-off against the fourth-placed team from the African Championship.

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