Rivalry Builds Friendship

August 24, 2013 at 12:26 pm 1 comment

We have on the show, and on this site previously highlighted how sport has the ability to breakdown political boundaries and unite people from different cultures or religions, another such example occurred this week.

Political relations between Afghanistan and Pakistan are to put it mildly, strained. Each nation blaming the other for the bloody violence that is plaguing both countries and resulting in pointless deaths.

Yet on tuesday the two national teams played an international game of football on a FIFA funded artificial pitch in Afghanistan. This was the first home international in Afghanistan since 2003 when they played Turkmenistan.

It was also the first time that these two neighbouring countries had played each other since 1977. This was prior to the old Soviet Union invading Afghanistan and Taliban rule. Football was not banned under the Taliban, but the Ghazi Stadium which was used for international games became notorious for executions, mutilations and stonings.

This game was played at the AFF Stadium and was witnessed by 6000 fans who left the stadium deliriously happy as Afghanistan, ranked one place above Pakistan in the FIFA World rankings at 139th, were the victors 3-0.

A re-match is scheduled for December in the Pakistani city of Kabul. Even thought this game was used to promote friendship victory over their arch rivals was sweet for the Afghanistan fans and proved the prefect way to launch the second season of the eight-team Afghan Premier League.


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1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. All White  |  August 24, 2013 at 1:05 pm

    Maybe there should be a game – 5-a-side between the Board and management of Football West and the club Presidents, so that they can restore peace and harmony!

    Then we will see if Mr Hugg did actually ever play the game. Not sure he would last 90mins as him and a few boardmembers would be key targets to kick. Would make plenty on the gate if they charged!


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