Muscat, Sept 17 - Oman goalkeeper Haitham Harib al Omrani has promised a best effort from the team as 63 days are left for the national team to kick off their third participation at the Fifa Beach Soccer World Cup which will be held in Paraguay from November 21 to December 1. In an exclusive interview with the Oman Daily Observer, the experienced goalkeeper highlighted on the latest preparations ahead of the World Cup.
“In our first participation in Beach Soccer World Cup in Italy in 2011, we had left from early stages without any point. In the next edition of the World Cup in Portugal in 2015 though, we went out in the early stage but managed to grab three points. In this third participation, our aim is to qualify from the group round and advance to the next round,” Haitham al Omrani said.
The draw of the Beach Soccer World Cup that took place recently at the Conmebol Convention Centre in Asuncion, Paraguay, clubbed the Sultanate team in a very tough group with the top teams including the five times champions Brazil, Portugal and Nigeria in Group D.
“ Yes, I agree we are positioned in a very tough group. However, we don’t have an “impossible” word in our dictionary. The players and the technical staff are aware of the situation. We have to fight with Nigeria and capture the winning points. Having a point from favourites Brazil and defending champions Portugal will be sufficient to advance to the next round,” the goalkeeper pointed out.
Oman will play warm-up matches in October against Iran and Morocco ahead of an external camp in Paraguay from November 11 to 20. “As I am one of the experienced member in the team, I will do my best to share my experience with the teammates in order to accomplish the targeted objective. Taking part at the global event is an honour for everyone and we hope to keep the flag of the Sultanate high,” Al Omrani said.
Oman beach soccer squad: Comprises Haitham Harib al Omrani, Amjad al Hamdani, Said al Farsi, Mundher al Oraimi, Mashal al Oraimi, Jalal al Sinani, Shareef al Balushi, Eid al Farsi, Ahmed al Musharafi, Abdullah al Balushi and Sami al Balushi.