Argentina friendly in Bangladesh in the offing

Staff Correspondent | Published: 12:57, Oct 08,2019 | Updated: 22:39, Oct 08,2019


A combo picture shows Argentina captain Lionel Messi (L) and his Paraguayan counterpart Gustavo Gomez. The two teams are likely to play an international friendly match in Dhaka on November 18. — AFP photos

Bangladesh Football Federation said on Tuesday it was working to host an international friendly match between Argentina and Paraguay in Dhaka on November 18.

‘At the moment it’s fifty-fifty. If some requirements are fulfilled the match will be held,’ BFF general secretary Abu Nayeem Shohag told New Age.

The BFF’s comments came after Paraguay Football Association in their official twitter account, Seleccion Paraguay, announced Tuesday that they would play two international friendly matches in November.

According to Seleccion Paraguay, the matches against Venezuela and Argentina will be held in Dhaka respectively on November 15 and 18.

BFF denied having any knowledge about Paraguay-Venezuela match but confirmed that talks are going on about hosting a match between Paraguay and Argentina.

‘We are working on one game – Argentina-Paraguay - for last two to three weeks. But few things remain to be sorted out, the financial deal, payment schedule, from where we will get the money. We are working on this,’ said Shohag.

The BFF official, however, said they will consider if Paraguay wants to play a game against Venezuela in their published date.

Shohag added UK-based football agent RightAgent4You is working as a mediator between the BFF and the two participating countries, but refused to provide any financial details.

‘We have federation to federation communication through agent as there is no scope to work directly with the federation,’ said Shohag. ‘We tried to communicate directly to the federation, but federation suggested us to communicate with their agent. The agent is the right holders of federation.’

Paraguay football team never visited Bangladesh but Argentina played a FIFA friendly against Nigeria in Dhaka in 2011.

Lionel Messi and Angel Di Maria were among others to star for Argentina in a 3-1 win over the African side in Dhaka.

Bangladesh have their own international engagement in November as they are scheduled to face Oman in Seeb, Oman in the 2022 World Cup and 2023 Asian Cup joint qualifiers on November 14.

Asked if the Argentina-Paraguay match will shift the focus elsewhere, the BFF secretary said they are careful about this.

‘Our main aim is to see if we can arrange a high-class or high-voltage match in Bangladesh between the two nations in FIFA window. The audience will enjoy a good match. As host it will be BFF’s achievement,’ he said.

The BFF was trying to bring some high profile international teams in 2020 when Bangladesh will celebrate the birth centenary of country’s founding president Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.

Shohag could not confirm if the planned match will be included with Mujib’s birth centenary programme.

‘Whether it would be included in Bangabandhu’s birth centenary celebration or not, BFF will talk about the possibility with the government. We informed the government about the arrangement of this match in meeting a week ago,’ he said.

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