Swindon Town Football Club are delighted and excited to announce a new partnership with Karachi Football Club in Pakistan.
On Saturday 5th February 2022, Karachi will be hosting a game in honour of Swindon Town Football Club, with Vice Chairman Zavier Austin the Guest of Honour.
This will mark the start of what is a historic tie-up between Swindon Town and Karachi FC, a relationship that will benefit both Football Clubs, the people of Pakistan and the diverse community in Swindon.
Zav Austin has released the following statement ahead of his trip to Karachi next month:
I am very pleased to announce this historic tie-up between Swindon Town and Karachi, and I am very excited about attending this game in honour of the Football Club next month.
I also want to place on record my significant thanks to Muhammad Iqbal Memon, the Commissioner of Karachi, for putting on this game in our honour. It is an absolute privilege to be able to attend these festivities and I look forward to building a long and fruitful partnership with the Commissioner and Karachi over the coming years.
Football is massively loved in Pakistan, as of course it is in England, and our plan has long been to take football to several under-privileged countries across Asia.
My thinking behind this is simple; if I would have said to anyone ten years ago that one of the greatest players in world football right now would have hailed from Egypt, I would have been laughed at.
However, Mo Salah is indeed one of the best players on the planet and our plan is to try and identify the hottest young talent across the world.
Unless you look you will never find and, as life has taught me, you can find the biggest gem in the most obscure places.
I am incredibly excited about this partnership with Karachi FC because of the considerable efforts that have gone into putting this event on.
This partnership will also be the first of many as Swindon Town look to identify exciting talent across Asia, and I will be exploring several countries in the foreseeable future in order to build and form relationships and friendships with a number of clubs.
I want to place on record my significant thanks to Mr. Nayyar Hasnain, who I met several years ago and have been in constant discussions with ever since. Nayyar plays a prominent role in football in Pakistan and was a member of the FIFA Disciplinary Committee between 2014-18, while he's a present member of the AFC Appeals Committee. Nayyar has been a huge help to me on this journey.
I’m also very excited that we’ve been able to recruit the services of Zaheer Hussain. Zaheer was educated in England and boasts in excess of over 40 years of experience in the footballing world in countries such as the United States, South America and Pakistan, and he’ll be an invaluable asset to us.
Former England and Liverpool Striker Michael Owen has recently been out to Pakistan in order to help build the football infrastructure in the country, with Michael’s presence highlighting the untapped potential that Pakistani Football possesses within its grasp.
Finally, it was less than a year ago that this great Football Club of ours was mismanaged and fans were treated so poorly. That is no longer the case now and this is a very exciting time for all involved. As such, our goal is to now make friends wherever we go and Clem and I, along with everyone else at the Football Club, want to use the remarkable power of football to bring people of all backgrounds, religions and communities together and our aim is to make Swindon Town the most friendly, welcoming and loved clubs in the world. This is the start of an exciting journey for all of us and I am exceedingly hopeful that this partnership will bear fruits and we will discover a hidden gem.