Dec 25 (Reuters) - Oman captain and goalkeeper Ali Al Habsi has been ruled out of next month’s Asian Cup due to injury, the Oman Football Association said on Tuesday.
The 36-year-old picked up a knock playing for Al Hilal against Al Ahli in the Saudi Premier League on Friday.
“It is the worst possible feeling when an injury deprives you of the chance to represent the national team. However, I have full confidence in my team mates,” Al Habsi, capped 120 times, wrote on Twitter.
Al Habsi’s injury is a blow for reigning Gulf Cup champions Oman, who are unbeaten in 2018 heading into the Asian Cup starting on Jan. 5.
Coach Pim Verbeek has called up Ammar Al Rashidi as a replacement for Al Habsi in his squad which is training in Abu Dhabi.
Oman start their Group F campaign against Uzbekistan in Sharjah on Jan. 9.
Reporting by Hardik Vyas in Bengaluru, editing by Ed Osmond