The teen is going to conduct the coin toss for the game between Brazil and Costa Rica
A teenager from Sialkot is set to become the first Pakistani to be part of a FIFA World Cup match as an official representative.
Ahmad Raza is going to conduct the coin toss in the game between Brazil and Costa Rica on June 22, tomorrow.
Three generations of the 15-year-old’s family has been crafting hand-stitched footballs for international professional leagues in Punjab, Pakistan.
The day is set to be extra special for Raza as he will be able to meet the Brazilian football team and attacker Neymar Jr, who he greatly admires, according to Pakistani English-language newspaper The Express Tribune.
Raza’s father, Shabbir Ahmad is also a football fanatic and his child’s participation in the World Cup has gotten both the father and teen excited.
Coca Cola has collaborated with two-time Academy Award winning filmmaker Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy to document the boy’s journey. The documentary is to be released next month.
The beverage giant has also gotten Pakistan’s football team captain Kaleemullah Khan to accompany Raza on his journey to Moscow.
Pakistani social media users and football fans are sharing the news and expressing their “pride”.
Twitter user @princesspokemo5 wrote: “A proud moment for Pakistan! 15 years old Pakistani Ahmed Raza is all set to be part of the coin toss for the historic match between Brazil and Costa Rica on 22 june 2018. #FIFAWorldCup2018”
Pakistan and football.”
Many international football matches use handstitched footballs supplied by Sialkot-based manufacturers. The ongoing 2018 Fifa World Cup is also featuring footballs made in Pakistan.