Thursday, July 16, 2009

Palestine to face China shorthanded, Bahdari border troubles

The Palestinian National team's squad will be without Ismail Amour, Majed Abusidu, Fadi Lafi, Abdelatif Bahdari, Husam Wadi, and Husam Ziyadeh. Ziyadeh, Wadi, and Amour will be missing through injuries picked up against Iraq on Monday. Fadi Lafi has had to return to start Shabab Al-Ordon's Jordanian Premier League campaign, Majed Abusidu is similarly committed. Part of the problem was that these friendlies were organized on a whim, we heard about these friendlies at the beginning of July, meaning that club sides were given a week's notification- hardly a professional way of handling business because of this Fahed Attal and Mohammed Shatrit had to reject the call-up. 

But wait it gets worse. So Mr. Jibril Rajoub who has extensive political connections, including connections with the occupying force known as Israel and the IDF, can enter and leave the West Bank as he pleases. In fact, instead of being harrassed and questioned for hours like any tourist or resident of the West Bank he crosses the Allenby Bridge much like most people cross state lines in Europe. You would think he'd use this muscle to help one of his most promising players.... but no, of course not. 

I reported in the comments section on Monday that Abdelatif Bahdari had in fact been allowed to cross into Jordan to join up with his new club- Wehdat (Reigning champions of the Jordanian Premier League and two-time AFC Cup finalists) but this is not true. Palestinian TV, had reported that Bahdari had been allowed entry on Sunday, but it has come to my attention that he has been turned back three times since his first trip to the border. When Rajoub got the FA job many of us thought that he could use his political leverage to help the team out. We thought we had seen the end of players being rejected exit/entry visas and we were looking forward to an era where we would play every match we scheduled at full strength. Well, we thought wrong.