LAHORE: The Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) on Saturday, named renowned England-based coach Stephen Constantine as the national men’s team’s head coach.
The announcement came after the PFF removed the previous manager Shehzad Anwar, due to the national team’s poor performance in recent times.
Consequently, Stephen Constantine takes the reigns of Pakistan football, just 12 days before their FIFA World Cup 2026 qualifiers’ first leg in Cambodia on October 12, followed by their home leg on October 17.
“In order to provide Pakistan with the best chance of winning the FIFA World Cup Qualifiers against Cambodia, the Pakistan Football Federation named Stephen Constantine as the new men’s national team head coach,” stated in a press release.
“Stephen, who is a legend in South Asia having taken India from 176 to 96 in the FIFA rankings, has also been an elite FIFA instructor since 2000. He brings the very top-tier professional experience and his familiarity with our region allows him to have an immediate impact.
“Stephen has agreed to join PFF with a singular focus for now – to win qualifiers against Cambodia. The away and home-based leg between Pakistan and Cambodia will be played on the 12th and 17th of October in Cambodia and Pakistan, respectively.
“PFF would also like to thank and appreciate Shehzad Anwar, for the very hard and difficult task of resurrecting Pakistan men’s national team football in just one year. Without his hard work and passion, our team would not be ready to rise to the next level.”
Stephen Constantine is one of the most accomplished coaches in Asia. He coached the Nepal national team for two years before taking over the Indian football team.
The England-based coach led India to silver medal at the 2003 Afro-Asian Games in 2003 and then to the South Asian Football Federation (SAFF) Championship glory in 2016. Under his coaching stint, India also won the Intercontinental Cup in 2018.
Stephen Constantine also coached notable football teams like Premier League’s AFC Bournemouth.