The UAE senior team left for Austria on Tuesday to begin the first of three overseas preparatory camps ahead of their January hosting of the 2019 Asian Cup.
Running until August 19, Alberto Zaccheroni’s team will play Andorra in a friendly on August 18, and will also play friendlies against four club sides during their stay in Salzburg.
Their second camp will be in Girona, Spain, from September 1-12, where they will play friendlies against Trinidad and Tobago on September 6 and Laos on September 11.
A third camp will be held in Barcelona, Spain, from October 6-16, with friendlies scheduled against Honduras on October 11 and Venezuela on October 16.
Two more camps will be held domestically from November 6-20 and December 15-31, with two more friendlies also expected to be announced.
The UAE face Bahrain, India and Thailand in Group A of the 2019 Asian Cup, which will take place across Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Al Ain and Sharjah, from January 5 to February 1.
In nine Asian Cup appearances, the UAE’s best finish was as runners-up to Saudi Arabia on home soil in 1996. They also finished third in their last outing in Australia in 2015.
Alberto Zaccheroni’s 27-man squad for Austria includes; Ali Khaseif, Khalid Eisa, Mohammad Bu Senda, Fahd Al Danhani, Esmail Ahmad, Mohannad Salem, Mohammad Ahmad, Bandar Al Ahbabi, Faris Juma, Mohammad Marzouq, Mahmoud Khamis, Mohammad Al Manhali, Abdul Aziz Sanqour, Walid Abbas, Mohammad Sabeel, Amer Abdul Rahman, Rayan Yaslam, Ahmad Barman, Omar Abdul Rahman, Khamis Esmail, Ali Salmeen, Saif Rashid, Majed Hassan, Esmail Al Hammadi, Ali Mabkhout, Ahmad Khalil and Saeed Jasem.
By Ashley Hammond
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