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Sanchez names strong Qatar squad

Doha: Head coach Felix Sanchez has gone for power by selecting a strong Qatar squad for Round 2 of the Asian Qualifiers for the 2022 FIFA World Cup Qatar and AFC Asian Cup China 2023.

Eight months after lifting the AFC Asian Cup for the first time at UAE 2019, Qatar will begin the defence of their title against Afghanistan in Group E of the Asian Qualifiers on Thursday.

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Having already sealed their berth in the 2022 FIFA World Cup Finals by virtue of being the hosts, Qatar will need a top two finish in Group E to confirm a place in the AFC Asian Cup China 2023 Finals.

Sanchez, who led Qatar to the AFC Asian Cup title, is keen on sealing qualification early for China 2023 and named a strong 24-player squad for the Afghanistan and India, who they play on September 10, matches. Also in the group are Bangladesh and Oman.

Sanchez has kept faith with most of the players who were part of the triumphant squad at UAE 2019, with captain Hassan Al Haydos - who scored his 100th club goal for Al Sadd on Saturday - leading the cast.

Strikers Akram Afif and Almoez Ali, who scored a record-breaking nine goals in UAE 2019, are also in the squad.

AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019: Moments

Qatar Squad

Goalkeepers: Saad Al Sheeb, Mohammed Al Bakri, Meshaal Barsham.
Defenders: Abdelkarim Hassan, Pedro Miguel, Tarek Salman, Bassam Al Rawi, Assim Madibo, Almahdi Ali, Musab Kheder.
Midfielders: Salem Al Hajri, Boualem Khoukhi, Karim Boudiaf, Ali Afif, Hashim Ali, Ahmed Fathi, Abdulaziz Hatem, Abdullah Abdulsalam, Yousuf Abdurrazaq.
Forwards: Hassan Al Haydos, Akram Afif, Almoez Ali, Abdulaziz Al Ansari, Ahmed Alaaeldin.

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