Join Now | 
HomeAboutContact UsPrivacy & SecurityAdvertise
Soccer America DailySpecial EditionAround The NetSoccer Business InsiderCollege Soccer ReporterYouth Soccer ReporterSoccer on TVSoccer America Classifieds
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalkSoccer America ConfidentialYouth Soccer InsiderWorld Cup Watch
RSS FeedsArchivesManage SubscriptionsSubscribe
Order Current IssueSubscribeManage My SubscriptionRenew My SubscriptionGift Subscription
My AccountJoin Now
Tournament CalendarCamps & AcademiesSoccer GlossaryClassifieds
Afghanistan picks S.J. State's Samy for qualifiers
by Paul Kennedy, October 4th, 2007 8:01AM

MOST READ
TAGS:  world cup

MOST COMMENTED

Yousef Samy walked at San Jose State in 2006 and was voted the Spartans' "Newcomer of the Year" by his teammates. A year later, he is off to represent Afghanistan, beginning Monday, in World Cup 2010 qualifying.

The American-born Samy is following in the footsteps of his father, Rahmat, who played for the Afghanistan national team in the 1970s.

"This is an honor to me," said Samy.  "I get to play for my country and for the same team my father played on when he was my age.  It takes years to build a national team to the level of competition that we're going to be facing.  I know we're not going to be the best team, we might even lose really bad.  I'm not going into this thinking that we're going to win the World Cup, but I hope this is going to be the beginning of something that will help create youth programs and get them to play at a more competitive level."

Soccer has a long tradition in Afghanistan. It finished fourth in the 1951 Asia Games and entered Asian Cup qualifying until the mid-1980s.

Under the Taliban, though, soccer suffered as religious fanatics forced players to wear long pants and long-sleeve shirts and often pray at halftime. Kabul's main soccer stadium was often the scene of summary executions in front of cheering mobs.

Afghanistan reintroduced its national team program after the fall of the Taliban in 2001, but it was disbanded because many of its players sought asylum abroad.

Afghanistan entered World Cup qualifying for the first time in 2003, but it lost to Turkmenistan, 11-0 and 2-0. The second game was played in Kabul -- the Afghanis' first home game in 44 years.

Afghanistan has entered a team in World Cup 2010 qualifying that begins Monday against Syria, and it includes players from Australia, Germany and the United States.

Samy, who has played in six games for San Jose State this season, is one of three players from California.



No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent College Soccer Reporter
Virginia upsets No. 1 seed Notre Dame    
No. 16 seed Virginia upset top-seeded and defending champion Notre Dame, 1-0, to move into the ...
Providence advances to final eight for first time    
A Markus Naglestad 30-yard free kick goal late in the second half gave No. 11 Providence ...
UMBC, the ACC giant slayer, strikes again    
UMBC won its third straight game on the road against current and former ACC giants, following ...
Texas A&M completes Women's College Cup field    
Texas A&M got two goals from Allie Bailey to defeat Penn State, 2-1, and advance to ...
NCAA Division I Men's Tournament schedule    
Play resumes in the NCAA Division I Men's Tournament Sunday with the round of 16. Four ...
Keeper Campbell wins shootout for Stanford    
Stanford goalkeeper Jane Campbell scored in the fifth round of the shootout to give Stanford a ...
Seminoles return to College Cup for fourth year in a row    
Second-ranked Florida State is headed back to the Women's College Cup for the fourth year in ...
Virginia stuns top seed UCLA in quarterfinals    
Virginia gained revenge for its defeat to UCLA in last year's Women's College Cup semifinals with ...
Anteaters stun Cardinal with first win in nine meetings    
[STANFORD-UC IRVINE: Men] Michael Sperber scored the first goal of his career in the 97th minute ...
Musketeers advance on 'legendary day'    
[INDIANA-XAVIER: Men] Xavier beat No. 5 seed Indiana for the first time with a 2-1 win ...
>> College Soccer Reporter Archives