Daniel Kabir Mustafá returns to national team

Palestine’s coaching staff has finally revealed its “foreign based defender” whose identity was widely debated but unknown in most circles.

When Daniel Kabir Mustafá joined the national team in 2012 it seemed that it had found a defensive pillar on which to build its team around. The 2012 WAFF Championship marked his international debut and was witnessed Palestine’s first ever win in the competition (a 1-0 victory against Lebanon). A year later he was back in the camp for the 2013/14 edition which featured a last gasp loss vs. Qatar and a 0-0 draw against Saudi Arabia.

Since that promising start, Mustafá fell off the national team radar. His absence was felt at the 2015 AFC Asian Cup where his absence combined with those of Haitham Dheeb and Omar Jarun left Palestine’s back line in shambles.

A disagreement with the PFA was cited as the reason for his five year absence. At 34, it remains to be seen if Mustafá is still the same imperious force he was when he made his debut. That said, if he is close to that level he would provide valuable cover at Palestine’s weakest position.

The Argentine born defender is a native of Cordoba and has played in Argentina, Portugal, Spain, Ecuador, Venezuela and Chile.

He is currently on the books of the fourth division side Sarmiento Los Leones and has five matches (four official caps) for Al-Fida’i.

Mustafá is expected to join the national team in their pre-Asian Cup camp in Qatar later this week. 

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