Vol. 4 Num 178 Sat. November 22, 2003  

FIFA Fussball-Weltmeisterschaft Deutschland 2006
Poorly prepared BD face Tajikistan Nov 26

It appears only a few days before Bangladesh play their long-awaited 2006 World Cup first-leg qualifier against Tajikistan there is apathy among players and officials of Bangladesh Football Federation.

But that is the least of their worries as Bangladesh, with little or no preparation, face the Central Asian country at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur on November 26. The away match will be held four days later in Dushanbe, the capital of Tajikistan.

Bangladesh coach Golam Sarwar Tipu felt poor groundwork could hamper the hosts chances.

"I'm not at all satisfied with the preparation going into such an important match," he said yesterday.

"Since the camp started on November 2, I could only work with the full squad just once.

I'm happy at least all twenty players joined the camp today after the end of the Federation Cup."

However, the coach was unhappy that he had less time to work on certain aspects.

"Maybe there was no necessity to work hard with some players but I had hoped that I could work for at least ten days to find out a good combination," the former national player added.

Tipu was also concerned at his long injury list.

"Hasan Al Mamun, Moni, Joy and Saiful are not 100 per cent at the moment. But I think they will recover before the big match."

On other hand, an unnamed senior player painted a different story.

"It was really funny how the national team was made to prepare when the federation officials were showing indifference. They didn't bother to know what was happening on the field and if we needed anything," the experienced booter told The Daily Star Sport on Friday.

The players and coaching staff can argue that their preparations could have gone smoothly had the BFF high-ups been more dynamic instead weighing the pros and cons of participating in the long World Cup campaign for a ticket to Germany.

Months before this fixture, football lovers in the country were stunned when the SA Sultan-led federation decided against taking part in the extravaganza citing it as a waste of money.

Yet in another strange twist the same officials were made to understand the benefits after 'polite' conversion between FIFA supremo Sepp Blatter and Sultan.

According to the latest FIFA rankings Bangladesh are 147th compared to Tajikistan who are 180. But the hosts ought to be reminded that their opponents though lowly on paper, nevertheless, narrowly missed out on playing in Asian Cup recently.


Goalkeepers: Aminul, Biplob; Defenders: Rajani, Sujon, Nazrul, Titoo, Hasan Al Mamun, Mahmudul Hasan; Midfielders: Joy, Arman, Parvez, Monwar, Motiur Munna, Biddyut, Saiful; Strikers: Alfaz, Farhad, Kanchan, Moni, Ujjal.