Muscat: In an attempt to provide more playing opportunities for the local players, the Oman Football Association (OFA) has decided to launch a new tournament in the 2017-18 season.
This was revealed by the OFA officials during a press conference organised at the association headquarters at the Seeb Sports Stadium on Wednesday.
Interestingly, the OFA officials while revealing the details of the activities planned for the new season also spoke about Oman national team’s preprations for the 23rd Gulf Cup to be organised in Qatar at the end of this year.
Briefing the media, OFA second vice-chairman Dr. Jassim Al Shukaili and board member Humaid Al Jabri revealed that the new season will start on September 9.
“The Super Cup match will kick start of the 2017-18 season on September 9,” said Al Shukaili.
The match will be played between Omantel Professional League champions Dhofar and His Majesty’s Cup winners Suwaiq.
“The Omantel Professional League will start September 13 and the first division league will run from September April 30, 2017 to April 30,” he added
Revealing the plans for organising a new tournament, he said: “We will have a new tournament in the new season. It will be called Union Cup (OFA Cup).”
“It will be a 10-team event and will run between May 23 to June 4 next year,” he added.
The Sultanate’s premier football championship, His Majesty’s Cup will take place from November 18, 2018 to April 5, 2018.
Gulf Cup preparations
Speaking about the national team’s engagements in the coming months, Al Shukaili said: “The national team will continue with their preparations for 2019 Asian Cup qualifiers. There will be a series of camps and matches in between and right up to their participation in the Gulf Cup in Qatar.”
“The team will be playing a few official friendly matches in the run up to the Gulf Cup in Qatar. The team will also be camping for a week before the Gulf Cup,” he added.
The 23rd edition of the Gulf Cup will take place in Qatar from December 22, 2017 to January 8, 2018.
“Following the Gulf Cup, the team will continue with their preparations for the Asian Cup qualifiers,” he added.
The OFA has also chalked out plans to host a friendly tournament later this year.
“We will be hosting a friendly tournament for national youth teams. The tournament will be played from October 5 to 9. Egypt and Syria have already confirmed their participation while Tunisia have verbally conveyed their willingness to take part in the event,” Al Shukaili said.