Football players say they’re unlikely to be productive


KARACHI: The expected dialogue between the Ashfaq group, the FIFA-appointed Standards Committee (NC) and the government is unlikely to be productive and pave the way for the PFF elections.

The Ashfaq group formed a committee of five members to meet with the NC and the government authorities. The correspondent learned that the Ashfaq group will ask IPC Minister Dr Fehmida Mirza to assure them that the FIFA-appointed Standards Committee will hold free and fair elections.

The Group also wants this agreement, if it is negotiated, to also be certified by FIFA. We learned that the Ashfaq group would put pressure on the NC to hold elections within three or four months. And that seems like a big deal for NC as it has already shared its plan with the state apparatus, promising it will hold an election within nine months.

We learned that the Ashfaq group will not leave the PFF headquarters but will give part of the secretariat to NC to conduct the electoral procedure without any interference.

The Ashfaq group thinks that the intentions of the NC are different and that is why it wishes to reoccupy the secretariat of the PFF. A few months later, the Ashfaq group released audio recordings which showed that the NC and its close collaborators were ready to rig the elections.

The group sent details to FIFA and AFC, but the two bodies took no action against anyone.

Sources from the Ashfaq group said there was nothing difficult about holding an election in three months. They say the elections will have to be conducted in accordance with the 2015 voters list. According to the rules, no new club can be part of the electoral process. According to the group’s sources, there are around 2,100 clubs that will take barely a month and a half to verify.

The big problem is that the Ashfaq group does not trust the existing NC nor are they satisfied with the way FIFA and AFC have ignored its revelations.

The group’s sources said they were open to dialogue in order to resolve the issue, but would not bow to anyone regarding the release of the PFF headquarters, it was learned.

NC, nominated by FIFA in September 2019, has obtained four extensions so far but has not taken a single step towards the election. FIFA spent millions on the committee, to no avail. It has been learned that so far around 19 NC meetings have taken place, 17 of which were attended by representatives of FIFA and AFC, but they did not understand the situation.

The Ashfaq Group has entered into a long-term deal with Global Soccer Ventures (GSV) and is set to launch the very first Pakistani Football League (PFL) based on a franchise from next March in Karachi.


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