Oman to play friendlies against Northern Ireland and Japan

Oman to play friendlies against Northern Ireland and Japan
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Published May 31st, 2016 - 16:13 GMT via

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Oman football team (photo:
Oman football team (photo:

With the national football team out of competitive action till early next year following Oman's exit in the second round of the 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifiers, national coach Juan Ramon Lopez Caro has chalked out an elaborate program for the coming months ahead. 

The programme, which was unveiled at a press conference at the Oman Football Association (OFA) headquarters on Monday, has a series of domestic and international camps including couple of high-profile international friendlies so far confirmed in August and November.

Oman is scheduled to play Northern Ireland in the first of the international friendly on August 31 during its camp in Europe from August 17-September 6. And the other friendly, announced by Lopez Caro, will be hosted by Asian heavyweight Japan on November 11.

Speaking to the mediapersons, Lopez Caro said, “My objective to host three domestic camps from June to August is to get a good idea of the new and promising players. I will have a good look and if they impress, then they could join the core group of the existing team.”

The first of the three domestic camp, which will be held in Muscat from June 1-5, will comprise 26 young players with three players – Khalil al Darmaki (Al Ahli, UAE) Hisham al Shuaibi (Al Arouba) and Abdulaziz al Hosni (Muscat) – called up for the first time to national team.

The remaining players called up have either represented Oman in age-group or U23 Olympic teams. “The door is open for all talented and worthy players. Following the camp in Muscat, the revised list will be named for the Salalah (July 16-26) and Muscat (July 31- August 9) camps,” said the Spaniard.

The team will likely hold its European camp in England or Scotland with two more friendlies planned during the trip besides the game against Northern Ireland.

The OFA is also trying to arrange international friendlies to be played during the FIFA days from October 3-11 and November 7-15. Oman is expected to play a friendly against a South-East nation on its way back after playing against Japan on November 11.

Lopez Caro said injured striker Imad al Hosni and defender Mohammed Sheeba will need to prove their fitness before they could make a return to the team.

Among the 26 players called up for the first camp, beginning on Wednesday, Arouba's Saad Suhail is the only regular national team member while the majority of players have been drafted from the Olympic team.

© Apex Press and Publishing

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