The initial development of the tour took place Tuesday after four representatives from the three-time European champion arrived in Dhaka in the morning and held meetings with the Youth and Sports Minister Jahid Ahsan Russel, Bangladesh Football Federation president Kazi Salahuddin and the tour’s country agent Antar Showbiz
European football giant Manchester United are likely to play a friendly against the best XI of Bangladesh Premier League either on July 23 or 30 during the English club’s pre-season tour in Asia next year.
The initial development of the tour took place Tuesday after four representatives from the three-time European champion arrived in Dhaka in the morning and held meetings with the Youth and Sports Minister Jahid Ahsan Russel, Bangladesh Football Federation president Kazi Salahuddin and the tour’s country agent Antar Showbiz.
Allan John Dawson, United’s director of football, Christoffer Laurens Komen, director of tours and friendlies of the club and officials Philip Malcolm Smith and Matthew Charles Jones are among the four-member delegation team.
The team visited the Bangabandhu National Stadium in the afternoon to inspect the grounds, media facilities, dressing room and galleries.
They are scheduled to visit the practice ground of Lt. Sheikh Jamal Dhanmondi Club Limited and Army Stadium, as well as the Hotel Intercontinental Dhaka to see the accommodation facilities Wednesday.
“Four delegates from the club arrived [Tuesday] which is the first phase of preparation to bring Manchester United to Bangladesh for a friendly match against BPL Xl either on July 23 or 30. If their terms and conditions go well with us, they will be here in July as part of the celebrations of the 100th birth centenary of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman,” informed Antar Showbiz chairman Shapan Chowdhury Tuesday.
No competitive game has taken place at BNS since Bangladesh hosted Asian champion Qatar in the World Cup qualifier on October 10 this year, and there is no fixture scheduled for the Big Bowl until the middle of December, and the pitch was something the United representatives took into notice.
“United will be travelling Asia during the pre-season tour. We want to take this opportunity,” said local advisor and former national footballer Abdul Gaffar before adding to a different query, “It seemed they didn’t like our grounds but they only said, ‘you have five kinds of grass’. I explained them that it’s our off season and pitch is not prepared yet.”
An attempt was earlier made to arrange an Argentina friendly in the Bangladeshi capital this month, as well as bring world football legend Pele in Bangladesh.
But the plans did not see the light of day due to sponsorship issue.
For the United tour in Dhaka, Antar Showbiz is working alongside Indian event management company, CMG, the same company that arranged the Argentina-Nigeria friendly in Dhaka in 2011.
When asked how the funds would be arranged, Antar Showbiz chairman said, “They are asking for more or less 3m euros, beside accommodation and security assurance. After their green signal, we will knock the sponsors first, and also seek support from the government.”