KARACHI – On Tuesday, Almira Rafeeque will be hoping to become the first Pakistan female footballer to make her appearance in the English Premier League when she takes part in the trials for Tottenham Hotspurs.
The 20 year UK based athlete represented Pakistan surprisingly for the first time at the South Asian Football Women’s Championship over a year ago, and has won the national ladies championship twice, first with Young Rising Stars in 2013 and then with Balochistan United FC the subsequent year.
Almira who is still in surprising mode at the turn in her career, is especially thankful to Lady Shehneela Ahmed (who is the first Asian women to become an FA approved agent) for this opportunity and the PFF-Pakistan Football Federation.
Almira told The Express Tribune, “I am still surprised this opportunity has come my way”.
She also added “It’s been a life-long dream of mine to become a professional footballer and I’m grateful to the PFF for putting faith in me after I represented the national team, and for getting me in touch with Shehneela.”
The midfielder who was UK born had returned to her home country in 2008 and started playing in Islamabad with Young Rising Stars FC the same year.
She later returned to the UK for higher education but once again made her return to the footballing circuit with the same club back home in 2013.
Almira said after the SAFF Championship who returned to UK “For now I’m in Luton Town and I’ve been playing with Luton Town FC for the past two weeks”.
Meanwhile on the other hand Shehneela said, “I’ll be working with Almira and other female footballers as they need proper guidance. I’ll do what I can to help them”.
PFF official Fahad Khan Said, “England is a good base to pursue a professional footballing career, and we just want our players to have this opportunity to progress.”
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