FIFA World Cup 2026 Qualifiers: Pakistan suffer setback as Harun Hamid ruled out of upcoming matches

He scored the historic goal against Cambodia in the first round

May 31, 2024
Harun Hamid takes part in a training session. - PFF

Pakistan's star midfielder Harun Hamid on Friday was ruled out of the upcoming FIFA World Cup 2026 Qualifiers against Saudi Arabia and Tajikistan due to injury. 

Hamid was carrying injury when he came to the ongoing Pakistan camp ahead of the qualifiers next month.

Hamid scored the only goal for Pakistan against Cambodia in the first round of the FIFA World Cup Qualifiers to help his side qualify for the second round for the first time in their history.

The medical panel of Pakistan team dropped Hamid from the squad after assessing his fitness. 

Pakistan are at the bottom of Group G as they have lost all four matches they have played so far. Pakistan began their journey with a 4-0 defeat at the hands of Saudi Arabia in Al-Ahsa in November followed by a 6-1 loss at the hands of Tajikistan at Islamabad in the same month.

Jordan then defeated Pakistan 3-0 in Islamabad in a game held in Ramadan with the Shaheens also losing the reverse fixture 7-0 at the Amman International Stadium.

Pakistan will face Saudi Arabia on June 6 and Tajikistan on June 11 in their final two matches of the second round.  

Meanwhile, Trishan Patel, the assistant coach of the Pakistan Football team believes that the national team will play with more commitment against Saudi Arabia.

“Saudi Arabia is a fantastic team. However, we will approach every game with excitement, determination, and fight, never with fear. Although our last two qualifying matches were disappointing, I believe that in the final two games, we will display a more committed team with a greater tactical understanding," Patel was quoted as saying by the Pakistan Football Federation in a press release.

Trishan, who has also been assigned the responsibility of Performance Analyst, further said: "I think first and foremost when you come up against a high-caliber opposition such as Saudi Arabia, you need to be clear with what you want in possession and out of possession. The boys on the camp have trained extremely hard and we are continuously working to evolve as a team and provide the right training so our trajectory is in an upward direction."

Faizan Lakhani is Deputy Editor (Sports) at Geo News.