Pakistan’s Telstar 18 football stars in World Cup opener

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Telstar 18 displayed alongside other sport products. (Photo courtesy: Forward Sports)
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Telsatr 18 and the FIFA Cup. (Photo courtesy: FIFA)
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Telsatr 18 and other sport products. (Photo courtesy: Forward Sports)
Updated 14 June 2018

Pakistan’s Telstar 18 football stars in World Cup opener

  • The high-tech Telstar 18, produced by Pakistani sporting goods manufacturer Forward Sports, is the most advanced football ever produced
  • World Cup under way with Russia beating Saudi Arabia 5-0 in Moscow.

ISLAMABAD: “It’s a proud moment for Pakistan to see our manufactured football in the first World Cup 2018 match between Saudi Arabia and Russia,” Saeed Mehr, of Forward Sports, said.

Forward Sports, based in the sporting goods city of Sialkot, is the maker of the high-tech Adidas Telstar 18 football, the most innovative football ever produced.

“We are excited to see the (Adidas) Telstar 18 football in action,” said Mehr.

The sporting goods company was founded in 1991, and produces 700,000 footballs a month for major league competitions such as the Champions League, German Bundesliga, France Ligue 1, as well as international brands.

The thermo-bonded Telstar 18 football features an NFC (near field communication) microchip that transmits information and promotes consumer interactivity utilizing smartphones.

The ball design was first used in the 1970 World Cup. 

Thermo-bonding technology uses heat to seamlessly patch panels, an improvement on stitching. 

Pakistan, ranked 142 on FIFA’s men's index in 1993, has plummeted to 201 in 2018. Women are ranked 118 on the index.

A 2017 FIFA ban on the country’s football federation over an internal power struggle and violations of FIFA rules, was lifted in March. The Pakistan Football Federation membership rights were reinstated, allowing club teams to take part in international football competitions and enjoy other benefits of international football.

Pakistan hasn’t participated in any international football event since 2015.

With just minutes left, Nigeria avoids international soccer ban

Updated 17 min 13 sec ago

With just minutes left, Nigeria avoids international soccer ban

LAGOS/ABUJA: Nigeria narrowly avoided being kicked out of international soccer on Monday when it recognized the FIFA-approved head of its national federation, minutes before a ban for its failure to do so was due to take effect.
The sport’s global body had said that, in response to state meddling in the running of the Nigerian Football Federation (NFF), it would suspend the country from international matches at 1100 GMT, thereby excluding the side from next month’s African Nations Cup qualifiers.
FIFA said it had received confirmation that its recognized leadership team under Amaju Pinnick had been “given back effective control of the NFF and its offices.”
“The suspension of the NFF will not take effect,” it said in a statement more than three hours after the deadline passed.
Pinnick, elected NFF head in 2014, was in a stand-off with Chris Giwa, who had appealed against the election result and, after a protracted legal battle, won a favorable high court ruling in June.
Giwa was handed a five-year ban by FIFA for breaches of NFF statutes and the FIFA code of ethics in February 2017.
In a tweet posted at 1038 GMT, a spokesman for Vice President Yemi Osinbajo said Nigeria had “already conveyed to FIFA its firm position recognizing Amaju Pinnick-led NFF as the current & only NFF Exco (executive committee).”
The government would work with all stakeholders “to resolve (the) dispute in a timely manner,” he added.
Giwa previously appeared to have the backing of the government. He was included by Sports Minister Solomon Dalung on a proposed list of delegates to meet FIFA president Gianni Infantino in Zurich last week – an approach that FIFA rejected.
FIFA, which does not accept third party involvement in its member federations, and had given Nigeria a final warning on 14 Aug to ratify Pinnick’s leadership.
In its statement, FIFA said it “will continue to closely monitor the situation in order to ensure that FIFA’s rules and regulations are fully adhered to.”
Nigeria are due to play a qualifier for the 2019 African Nations Cup in the Seychelles on Sept. 8.