Earlier this month, Olympic Team manager Ayman Sandouqa announced preparation plans for next month’s U23 Championship in China. The tournament will mark Palestine’s first finals at youth level and the former Ahli and Shabab Al-Khaleel manager will be keen to make a good impression.
To prepare for the finals the young Fida’i will face Oman on the 12th and 15th of December in Doha. Palestine will also face Qatar on the 29th of December and will fly out to China the next day- 12 days ahead of their opening match.
Palestine have been drawn in Group C alongside holders Japan, Korea DPR, and Thailand.
Sandouqa has also announced that several players from the diaspora have agreed to represent Palestine and will be part of the squad in China. These players include three, yet to be identified, Chilean-Palestinians as well as the following players based in Europe:
Michel ‘Dado’ Termanini (AFC Eskilstuna) and Saado Abdel Salam (Platanias) will most likely slot in at both center back spots. Their experience as part of their respective first teams in the Swedish and Greek topflight will provide Palestine with a much needed boost in its weakest area on the pitch.
Also joining the contingent are:
- Mohamed Darwish- a left winger/attacking midfielder and former star of Hannover 96’s youth teams- who is currently on the books of Arminia Hannover.
- Mohammed Al-Kayed- a Swedish based striker who scored 14 goals in the third tier for KSF Prespa Birilik