Hosts United Arab Emirates have announced a 23-man squad for the upcoming AFC Asian Cup 2019. There have been a few surprises, however, in the squad picked up by coach Alberto Zaccheroni.
The hosts are already without star Omar Abdulrahman, who was ruled out for the season with a knee injury back in October. Ahmed Khalil’s inclusion, however, would a big boost for them.
Here’s the full squad:
Khalid Essa, Bandar Al Ahbabi, Mohamed Ahmed, Ismail Ahmed, Amer Abdulrahman, Rayan Yaslam, Mohamed Abdulrahman (Al Ain); Ali Khaseif, Khalifa Al Hammadi, Fares Juma, Khalfan Mubarak, Ali Mabkhout (Al Jazira); Khalifa Mubarak, Mahmoud Khamis (Al Nasr); Walid Abbas, Majed Hassan, Ismail Al Hammadi, Ahmed Khalil (Shabab Al Ahli Dubai Club); Saif Rashid (Sharjah); Mohamed Al Shamsi, Ismail Matar (Al Wahda); Ali Salmeen, Khamis Esmail (Al Wasl)
UAE have been drawn alongside India, Bahrain and Thailand in Group A of the tournament.
The hosts start their campaign against Bahrain, which would also be the tournament opener, on 5th January. They face Indian next on 10th January before finishing their group stage campaign with an encounter against Thailand on 14th of the month.