Pakistan’s international midfielder/forward, Kaleemullah, has signed with the Tulsa Roughnecks FC, according to the Oklahoma based club’s official website, believed to the first Pakistani born player to play a professional match for a US club.
The 23-year-old, who has made 25 appearances with the Pakistan National Team, played last season for the Sacramento Republic. He will add another viable attacking option for Tulsa head coach David Irving.
Kaleemullah began his career with Khan Research Laboratories FC in the Pakistan Premier League, spending five seasons with the squad. He appeared in 94 matches with the KRL, scoring 72 goals and set a PPL record by scoring 31 goals in the 2012-2013 campaign. Khan won four league titles during his five seasons with the club.In 2014, he joined FC Dordoi in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. He spent one season with Dordoi, leading the side to the league title while scoring 18 goals and providing 8 assists.
Last year, Kaleemullah joined USL side Sacramento Republic FC. Several factors, including a coaching change, meant that he only appeared in seven matches for the Republic.
“It is exciting to add Kaleemullah to our club,” said Irving. “He is a young player with great pace and skills who has a very high ceiling in the game. He didn’t get much playing time last season, but his goal scoring record in past years has been phenomenal.”He scored his first international goal in a 2-0 victory against Macau on March 21, 2013.
“I am very happy to be joining Tulsa Roughnecks for the USL 2016 season,” said Kaleemullah. “I’m excited about what we can achieve together as a team, and I hope to prove myself while helping the team reach its goals.
Kaleemullah has been a regular member of the Pakistan National Team since 2011 and was named the team captain in 2014. He has made 25 total appearances for the senior squad, scoring four times.
“I really look forward to having a long stay with the Tulsa fans even beyond this season. Finally, I wish to thank Sacramento Republic FC, Tulsa Roughnecks FC and my agent Adel Saad for giving me this opportunity to represent Pakistan in the USL, and I’ll do my best to repay their faith in me.”
Kaleemullah is expected to be in Tulsa in late February or early March when the Roughnecks open preparations for their second season in USL.