Nepal win second friendly

source: myrepublica.com

29 Nov 2009 - Nepali football team, preparing for the Sixth SAFF Championship, continued their winning streak in the second friendly practice match on Sunday. Nepal defeated Bhutan 2-1 during the friendly played at Mohammedan Sporting Club, Kolkata.

The first half of the match remained goalless. However, Bhutan surprised Nepal early in the second half and took the lead. As Nabil Three Star´s winger Bijay Gurung fouled the opposition in the D-box, Bhutan won the chance of spot-kick. Pasang Tsiring scored to keep Bhutan ahead.

Nepal, who have never lost to Bhutan in international football, were under pressure. However, Indian League side Shillong Lajong´s Nepali striker Anil Gurung scored and leveled the match. Anil passed the ball into the net as defender Biraj Maharjan provided a good pass.

Bijay earned the winner for Nepal 10 minutes before the final whistle. Bijay scored with a spectacular shot from just outside the penalty box. Nepal Police Club´s forward Chetan Ghimire´s pass was utilized by Bijay to clinch victory for Nepal.

Nepal were earlier scheduled to play the second friendly match against I-league club Chirag United on Monday. However, the match was postponed for some unspecified reason. Nepal, nonetheless, got the chance to play against Bhutan.

Nepal had defeated I-league club Mohun Bagan 3-1 on Thursday in their first practice match. Nepali team will leave Kolkata on Wednesday to participatein the SAFF Championship being held in Dhaka from December 4 to 14.

Nepal, drawn in the group of death, will take on defending champion Maldives, four-time champions India and physically tough Afghanistan in their group.

Nepal win friendly against Mohun Bagan

27 Nov 2009 - Nepali national football team registered a 3-1 victory over Mohun Bagan, an Indian outfit, in the friendly match held in Kolkata on Friday. The Nepali team is in Kolkata to play two friendly matches in India as a preparation for the upcoming 6th SAFF Championship to be held in Dhaka, Bangladesh from December 4-14.

Nepal came from one goal deficit against Bagan, the runners up of I-league´s 2008/09 edition, to keep their morale high. Striker Jumanu Rai netted a brace before Anil Gurung leveled the scoring.

Anil leveled in the 43rd minute for Nepal through penalty after conceding an early goal in the 17th minute by Branco Cardozo. Nepal were awarded with a penalty after the Indian side played foul against Jumanu inside the box. Likewise, Jumanu added another in the 55th minute through a powerful shot from the box to give Nepal a 2-1 lead.

Jumanu scored once more a minute before the final whistle to seal victory for the team. Jumanu narrowly escaped missed the chance of completing his hat-trick as he missed a one-versus-one chance in the stoppage time.

Coach Krishna Thapa, satisfied over the team´s performance, said, “Boys displayed excellent footballing though we conceded an early goal. As I have told that striking line is our greatest weapon, the boys proved it today."

Coach Thapa had made a slight change in the team formation as striker Chetan Ghimire was brought in the midfield in the first 11 squad.

Before the match, both the teams held a minute of silence to mark the death of former football player Narendra Man Singh.

Nepali line-up: Jumanu Rai, Anil Gurung, Bijay Gurung, Sandeep Rai, Raju Tamang, Chetan Ghimire, Anjan KC, Rakesh Shrestha, Sagar Thapa, Biraj Maharjan and Bikash Malla.

Footballers off to India; cash rewards announced

source: myrepublica.com

Kathmandu, 26 Nov 2009- The ANFA advisors present to bid farewell to national team at the ANFA Complex on Thursday for 6th SAFF Championship to be held in Dhaka from December 4-14 have decided to provide a cash prize of Rs 100,000 each to 27 member team if the team win the championship on behalf of Partners of Nepali Football, Partners of Pride.

Anil Shah, Nabil Bank CEO made such a pledge speaking on Behalf of ANFA advisors. Shekhar Golcha and CP Khetan are other advisors.

The team left for Kolkata, India on Thursday to play practice matches with Indian League outfit Mohan Bugan on Friday and Chirag United on Monday. They will be leaving for Bangladesh on December 2.

The Partners of Nepali Football, Partners of Pride is any institution set up by the ANFA advisors. However, it is an open ended institution where any corporate house can join to support football and footballers in Nepal. Likewise, they have also declared to provide a cash prize of Rs 25,000 each to the members of the squad if they cross the group stage and if they win the semifinals they will be provided with Rs 40,000 each.

Motivating the players to win the championship Shah said, “You are the best players across the nation and you can bring collective smile in the faces of 30 million people of the nation by winning the championship.”

Speaking on the occasion, Minister for Youth and Sports Gopal Tiwari Nepali said that he was confident that the team will win the match. He also expressed his wish to go Bangladesh to watch the football match.

Nepal is pitted in group ´A´ along with Maldives, India and Afghanistan while the host Bangladesh, Bhutan, Pakistan and Sri Lanka are drawn in group ´B´.

Team coach Krishna Thapa said that the first match against Sri Lanka was vital for the team. “The first match against Sri Lanka will be the major challenge for us. India won´t pose a threat for us as they are fielding inexperienced players (U-23) and Afghanistan won´t be very tough for us as they are new in the tournament.”

“Besides this, we have good line up of strikers -- Anil Gurung, Jumanu Rai and Santosh Shaukhalal have got the ability to alter the match at any moment. Our defense line up could be better if Rohit Chand could adjust in the defending line-up.”

Actor Rajesh Hamal, National Sports Council member secretary Hari Babu Chaudhary, ANFA officials among other bade farewell to the team amidst Nepal Police musical band. The band team also played national anthem music to motivate the players to put up a good performance.

Nepal´s match scheduleDecember 5: Maldives VS NepalDecember 7: India VS Nepal December 9: Afganistan Vs Nepal

Football not foreign to superstar Rajesh Hamal

Kathmandu, 26 Nov 2009 - Popular actor Rajesh Hamal expressed confidence that Nepali football team would perform well in the SAFF Championship. Bidding farewell to the players before they left for the regional event scheduled for December 4-14 in Bangladesh, he also shared his sports experience with myepublica.

A few days before the 1998 World Cup began, Hamal, in a TV program, was asked which country he thought would win the World Cup. “France is progressing a lot in football and also being the hosts may win the World Cup,” replied Hamal. His words became prophetic. And France won the World Cup.

“Any game is influenced a lot by the players´ spirit. This sentiment was instrumental in France´s victories in World Cup and European Championship,” he said.

Hamal developed a fascination for football during his schooldays in Europe, where he traveled along with his diplomat father. He spent a long time in Russia and then moved to West Germany and the US. Though, it was in Russia where he became an avid viewer of FC Dynamo.
Hamal was in Russia when Pele played World Cup for Brazil in 1970, which he watched live on TV.

He was in West Germany during the 1972 Munich Olympics when the terror strike took place against the Israeli players. While in Moscow, Hamal didn´t miss the opportunity to watch some European League matches in the stadium. But he didn´t find the same craze for football in the US, where baseball was more popular.

He watched the 1986 world cup graced by Argentine player Maradona on television in Kathmandu. Nepali youths then were blind supporters of Maradona, recalls Hamal. “Nepali youths took Maradona as their idol maybe because his height resembled that of the Nepali people,” opined Hamal.

He used to play a lot of ice hockey when he was in Russia. After a long time when he went to Simla in India, the snow covered landscape reminded him of his childhood and he opted for skiing. He felt that skiing was like cycling -- one never forgets it once learnt.

When asked how much he played football during his youth days, Hamal countered, “Is there anyone who hasn´t played football while studying in school and college?” adding, “I played in my country and abroad but I didn´t think of pursuing it as a career.”

Hamal never misses to play football matches that are organized occasionally for charity. He put up an impressive show in a match held few weeks ago at the Dasharath Stadium in which celebrities played against journalists. After the match, spectators surrounded him for almost half an hour. He said that though he watched all the matches played by the Nepali team under the captainship of Raju Shakya, he hasn´t been able to watch any of the matches recently.

Claiming that he has good ties with the popular player of his time Ganesh Thapa, he recalled, “We have stood in the same stage together.”

He suggested that India´s development in sports might be worth considering for Nepal. “It takes a long time to develop the standard of football but it doesn´t take much time for it to fall,” he said.

Hamal said that he hasn´t played football since a long time while he acted for the advertisements of Captain Soap and in the film ´Chatyang´.

Hamal who is eagerly waiting for the World Cup which will be held next year in South Africa claimed, “Nepali football team will spread the message of national unity in Bangladesh at a time when the nation is in political imbroglio,” adding, “ If we play with the spirit that we can win, we will definitely come up with good results in Bangladesh.”

Rajesh Hamal to bid farewell to footballers

source: myrepublica.com

Kathmandu, 25 Nov 2009 - The All Nepal Football Association (ANFA) has invited actor Rajesh Hamal, instead of the regular preference of political figures and ministers, for the farewell of the national football team on Thursday.

Along with Hamal, Minister of Youth and Sports Ganesh Tiwari Nepali, National Sports Council Member Secretary Haribabu Chaudhary and ANFA officials will bid farewell to the players at ANFA Complex, Satdobato. ANFA Vice Chairman and Spokesperson Lalit Krishna Shrestha said that Hamal was invited to boost the morale of the players.

The Nepali team is leaving for Kolkota on Thursday for practice match before the Sixth SAFF Championship. Nepal will play the practice match with I League´a 5th position holders Mohun Bagan on Friday and 3rd position bearers Chirag United on Monday next week.

The team will leave for Bangladesh after the practice matches to participate in the SAFF Championship, which will be held from December 4-14.

Friendly matches in Kolkata

source: myrepublica.com

Kathmandu, 22 Nov 2009 - Nepali football team, which is preparing for the Sixth SAFF Championship, is all set to play friendly matches in the Indian city Kolkata.

They will head to Kolkata on Thursday and play two friendly matches on Saturday and next Monday. However, the opponents are still to be fixed.

According to All Nepal Football Association´s CEO Indraman Tuladhar, Nepali team is visiting Kolkata after former coach Shyam Thapa arranged for the practice matches.

Pradeep, Vishad left out of team 20-member football squad named for SAFF

source: myrepublica.com

Kathmandu, 23 Nov 2009 - Midfielders Pradeep Maharjan and Vishad Gauchan have been excluded from the national football team for the upcoming sixth SAFF Championship.

National coach Krishna Thapa did not name the Nabil Three Star Club duo in the 20-member squad that was announced amid a press conference at the Dasharath Stadium on Monday.

“Pradeep is facing fitness problem,” Thapa said. “He tried hard to recover but could not. Therefore we left him out.”

Thapa claimed that Vishad missed out training sessions and he could not uplift his game standard.

Both Maharjan and Gauchan had debuted in the national team in the Fourth SAFF Championship held in Karachi, Pakistan, against India in 2005.

The team named on Monday has two goalkeepers. Three coaches with the team, Thapa, Maheshwar Mulmi and Upendra Man Singh picked up Nepal Army´s Bikash Malla and Nepal Police Club´s Ritesh Thapa for the job.

Other two keepers in competition -- Kiran Chemjong and Rupesh Shrestha -- missed the chance for inclusion in the team. “Kiran missed training sessions and Rupesh is physically unfit,” added Thapa.

The team consists of seven defenders and seven midfielders. Friends Club´s Nurraj Kafle is out of the team due to injury. Robin Shrestha, Rakesh Shrestha, Sagar Thapa, Biraj Maharjan, Anjan KC, Chun Bhadur Thapa and Rohit Chand complete the defense line-up.

The midfielders selected in the team are Sandeep Rai, Raju Tamang, Bijay Gurung, Bhola Nath Silwal, Yogesh Shrestha, Ranjit Shrestha and Nirajan Khadka.

Youngster Nirajan Malla missed out the forward spot due to injury and Bikarna Shrestha was not named for disciplinary reasons. The forwards named in the team are Anil Gurung, Jumanu Rai, Santosh Sahukhala and Chetan Ghimire.

“Ganesh Lawati is a laborious player but he could not make it to the team because he had tough competition with other sharp strikers,” explained Thapa.

Thapa claimed that the team is strong in midfield and forward line-up and that the national squad is superior to Afghanistan and India.

“We will play as per opponent,” he said. “Against the team like the Maldives with whom we have 50-50 chance, we will try to mark talented players and score.”

Nepali team is heading to Kolkata on Thursday for two practice matches. The sixth edition of the SAFF Championship is being held in Dhaka on December 4 -14. Nepal will face the Maldives, India and Afghanistan in the group matches.

28 footballers selected

Kathmandu, 9 Nov 2009 - A list of 28 players was finalized on Monday out of the 48 football players called for the first phase training by All Nepal Football Association for selection for the SAFF Championship. Among them, 20 will be finalized after two weeks for the regional football tournament to be held in Bangladesh from December 5-15.

Monday´s selection includes four goalkeepers, nine defenders, nine midfielders and six forwards, said team coach Krishna Thapa.

Bikash Malla, Kiran Chemjong, Ritesh Thapa and Rupak Shreshta are the keepers. The defenders include Rakesh Shrestha, Sagar Thapa, Biraj Maharjan, Anjan KC, Chun Bahadur Thapa, Nur Raj Kafle, Robin Shrestha, Rohit Chand and Yogesh Shrestha.

Likewise, the midfielders are Sandeep Rai, Bishan Gauchan, Bijay Gurung, Nirajan Khadka, Ranjit Shrestha, Raju Tamang, Dipendra Shrestha, Bhola Silwal and Pradip Maharjan. Similarly, Jumanu Rai, Bikarna Shrestha, Santosh Sahukhala, Ganesh Lawati, Nirajan Malla and Chetan Ghimire are the forwards. Nepali striker Anil Gurung who is currently playing in the Indian league will also be included in the second phase after he returns home this week.

Jordan, Yemen qualify for final round

source: myrepublica.com

Kathmandu, 4 Nov 2009 - Jordan and Yemen qualified for the final round of the AFC U-19 Championship as the winners and runners-up of the Group A qualifiers on Wednesday.

In their last league match, Jordan continuing with their unbeaten run had a comfortable 2-0 victory over Tajikistan at the Dasharath Stadium to top the group with 13 points. Similarly, Yemen outplayed Kyrgyzstan 3-1 at the Halchowk ground to secure berth for the final round as runners-up with 11 points.

In the other match played at the Dasharath Stadium, Palestine thrashed the home team Nepal 4-1 to climb onto the fourth spot with four points, while the hosts Nepal and Kyrgyzstan lie at the bottom two spots respectively with three points each. However, Nepal seized the fifth spot on the basis of head-to-head record as Nepal had defeated Kyrgyzstan 2-1 in the match played on October 27.

Jordan, keeping the entire match under control, had to wait until the second half to materialize their dream of scoring against Tajikistan, who needed a must win to book their place for the final round of the tournament to be held next year. Hamza Ali scored the first goal to give Jordan the lead in the 63rd minute, while Mahmoud Saleem netted another six minutes later to seal their victory.

Hamza gave a beautiful finishing move in the box utilizing a pass from Suhib Adnan to score the first goal. Likewise, Mahmoud made a close range strike to pile more pressure on Tajikistan utilizing a rebound off Suhib.

Earlier, in the first half, Jordan made about three powerful strikes but failed to score. Mahmoud Saleem´s powerful strike rebounded hitting the bar twice while the Tajiks could make only one impressive attempt at the post.

“Despite playing a good game we lost due to the stubborn defensive line of Jordan.Though we made good moves the defense line up did not give us any chance,” said Tajikistan coach Gufrov Salokhidini after the match.

Happy with the team´s qualification for the final round Jordan coach Semida Mohamed commented that they played well and won. “We came up with disciplined game and good footballing,” he said.

Nepal´s Rohit Chand scored the first goal in the 12th minute against Palestine but Nepal could not keep up the pace. Nepal were awarded a penalty after Sujal Shrestha was brought down in the box, which Rohit slammed straight into the net.

Nepal´s joy of scoring the first goal couldn´t last long as Palestine´s captain Ahmed Hamed scored an equalizer in the 25th minute. Hammam Abuhasanein added another goal for Palestine six minutes later. He scored a one-versus-one goal from the box.

Palestine received a penalty as Bishal Rai fouled Rami Almasalma in the box. Rami did not commit any mistake to send the ball into net in the 37th minute.

In the second half, Anas Sulaiman converted a corner kick into a goal, killing the match in the 63rd minute.

Nepal had several good chances to strike back but were unable to score. Sujal Shrestha´s shot in the 82nd minute returned after hitting the pole while the Palestine goalkeeper remained stationary.

Palestine coach Moussa Bezaz was happy to see his players perform well. He said that it was difficult to select players for his team because there are no domestic leagues for age group players in Palestine.

In the match played at the Halchowk ground, Yemen got the first goal as a gift from Kyrgyzstan in the 45th minute when Rouslan Ajamal of Kyrgyzstan scored an own goal. Yemen´s Ashraf Ismail added another in the 67th minute to pile up more pressure on Kyrgyzstan. Al Saleh scored another goal for Yemen seven minutes later to confirm their place for the final round of the tournament to be held next year.

Ivanov Igor scored a consolation goal for Kyrgyzstan in the 86th minute.

Nepal to take on Palestine for consolation win

Kathmandu, 4 Nov 2009 - Nepal are competing with Palestine for the consolation win in the AFC U-19 Championship group ´A´ qualifiers as they have already crashed out of the tournament.

Nepal have lost their qualifying chance, though they won the match against Kyrgyzstan and contested well against other teams except Yemen. Nepal scored twice and performed well against Jordan but they repeated mistakes and lost the match 3-2. Nepal could not utilize the chance even as Jordan were limited to nine men during the match.

Nepal conceded goals due to their own mistakes and not because the opponents played better. The repeated mistakes of goalkeeper Dinesh Thapa cost Nepal the qualifying chance. Jordan had scored the second goal because of his mistake. Likewise, Tajikistan had scored the winning goal in the same fashion. However, Coach Raju Kaji Shakya didn´t replace Dinesh stating other goalkeepers didn´t have confidence.

The Nepal vs Palestine match has no meaning in the qualifiers as Palestine are also already away from the qualifying chance.

During the tournament Nepal scored five goals where Nirajan Malla and Shiva Shrestha shared the scoring tally to prove the young Nepali team had good scoring ability. Nepal are playing to win respect, said Coach Shakya, adding, “Though we are out of the tournament, we´ll play for win.”

Meaningful games

The top two teams of the tournament will qualify for the final round of AFC U-19 Championship. The race is open for the top three teams -- Jordan, Tajikistan and Yemen. Jordan -- which are at the top with 10 points, are taking on Tajikistan on Tuesday. Tajikistan have 9 points. Meanwhile, Yemen (8 points) will take on Kyrgyzstan.

Wednesday´s matches

Tajikistan Vs Jordan - 12.00 (Dasharath Stadium)
Nepal Vs Palestine - 2:30 (Dasharath Stadium)
Kyrgyzstan Vs Yemen - 2:00 (Halchowk Ground)

Anil debuts in I-League

2 Nov 2009 -Anil Gurung, the striker of the Nepali national football team, played his debut match for Shillong Lajong FC in the Indian League. Anil was placed in the first eleven in the match against Salgaocar SC. The match ended in a goalless draw.

After the match played at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Shillong, SLFC are in seventh position of the league table with seven points. Salgaocar are in eighth position with six points. There are 14 teams in the league.

Anil impressed the home crowd of Shillong in his debut performance. Anil created scoring chance for Niwan O Gatpoh but the midfielder missed the opportunity.

Anil was signed by SLFC on Friday for Rs 6.36 million for three years.

source: myrepublica.com

Viewers attack assistant referee with stone

Assistant referee Shakour Heidar of Bangladesh was injured on Sunday after he was hit by a stone pelted by viewers in the AFC U-19 group ´A´ qualifiers held at the Dasharath Stadium.

The audience hit Heidar with stone after the Jordan team limited to nine men took the unexpected lead while the match was in 2-2 draw.

The stone attack was provoked by the celebration of the Jordanian team. Haidar, who sustained injuries on the head, was rushed to the nearby hospital. His job was taken over by the fourth official Saleem Ali of Maldives.

Earlier, Mustafa Anwar after conceding the second yellow card had kicked a water bottle which went straight to the parapet of the stadium. The viewers got more annoyed after the host ANFA officials delayed while sending him off the ground.

Meanwhile, another player of Jordan Jaid Mohmood picked up an injury on his face after he collided with his team mate while celebrating the winning goal. However, the Jordan team claimed that he was injured after he was hit by a lighter hauled by Nepali fans.

The ANFA officials informed that three viewers, who had allegedly thrown stones,were caught while fleeing from the stadium.

The Metropolitan Police Range, Kalimati, refused to disclose the identity of those three handed over to them by the ANFA.

Soon after the completion of match Commissioner Ahmed Shahir deputed by the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) held an emergency meeting with the Armed Police Force officers deployed for security. “We said in the meeting that viewers pelted stone at Mustafa (who conceded the second red card) after the Jordanian player misbehaved with the audience. We argued that the stone was targeted at the Jordanian player. But the match commissioner asked for video clip as a proof of the incident,” said a reliable ANFA source.

Earlier, ANFA was slapped with a fine of US $ 7000 after viewers hit the Kyrgyzstan player during the AFC Challenge Cup qualifiers 2010 with water bottle and coin at the Dasharath Stadium on March 28.

Nepal's hope ends, title race open for top three

Kathmandu, 1 Nov 2009 - Nepali team was humiliated 3-2 on Sunday by nine-men Jordan in the tense match of the AFC U-19 Championship group ´A´ qualifiers held at the Dasharath Stadium.

Nepal´s hope of entering in the final round of the tournament got shattered with the loss, while Jordan climbed on to the top of table with 10 points. Now the race has become wide open for the top three teams--Jordan, Tajikistan (nine points) and Yemen (eight points).

Jordan being limited to 10 and nine men in the 35th and 75th minute scored the second and winner goal in the hard fought match with player´s deficit against home team in the 37th and 88th minute respectively.

Nepal which needed a must win to keep their hope for final round conceded the first goal in the 25th minute through a close range strike of Mahmoud Zatara utilizing a cross pass from Suhib Wihaybi.

However, Nepal with an attempt at comeback leveled the match three minutes later as Nirajan Malla made a spectacular slide kick.

Jordan defender Mohammad Zureigat was slapped with the first red card following his elbow attack to Nirajan who had fallen in the ground after they collided with each other and were grounded. But the Jordan team with high spirit took the lead again in 37th minute after Nepali custodian Dinesh Thapa Magar made a blunder. Suhib beat Dinesh, who came away from the post and netted the ball in between two defenders.

Again, Shiva Shrestha made a beautiful volley kick in the 73rd minute from the edge of the box, much to the delight the Nepali fans, and take the match in 2-2 draw.

Jordan midfielder Mustafa Saleh had got marching orders after getting the second yellow card three minute before they conceded the equalizer. But Mohammad Jamjoom of Jordan scored the winner two minutes before finishing time to give a blow to the home team.

Nepali team, which dominated the second half of the match, made about half dozen good chances of scoring in but in vain.

Jordan coach Semida Mohamed said that Nepal displayed a good football. “However we took the full points,” he said.

Nepali coach Raju Shakya said that his team was under pressure as they needed a must win in the match. “The players were under pressure as it was a do or die match for us,” he said. “The players played well and we created lot of opportunities, but we were unable to utilize them,” he added.

Earlier, in the first match, Kyrgyzstan registered their first win of the tournament to open their account with three points. Shamshiev Islam and Abdukaimov scored one each for the winning side in the 30th and 70th minute against the Palestine who got restricted to 10 men after skipper Alaaeddin Yamin was shown red card in the 83rd minute.

The Palestine French Moussa Bezaz claimed the referee´s decision of showing red card to his players was stupid. He also accepted that his team could not play well and they deserved the loss. “My players also underestimated the opponents,” he said.

Kyrgyzstan coach Aleksandrov Vladimir said that he was happy with the results. However, unsatisfied with the team´s performance he said, “My team did not play well.”

Tajikistan´s unbeaten record came to an end as Yemen defeated them 3-0 at the Halchowk Ground.

Although the first half remained goalless, Yemen dominated the entire match. Tajik player Ulmasov Naim got the marching orders in the 43rd minute as he got two yellow cards in the first half.

Yemen was awarded a penalty in the early minutes of the second half as Tajik goalkeeper Saidjon pushed an opponent. Al Worafi scored the penalty shot in the 54th minute giving Yemen a lead.

The Tajik team got some relief as Yemen´s Al Baidhani got a second yellow card in 75th minute for touching the ball while holding a bottle of water.

Aiman Saleh doubled the lead in 81st minute as he scored from the box. Though Saleh´s first attempt was blocked by Saidjon, he succeeded to score as the ball slipped from the goalkeeper´s hand. Al Hubaishi of Yemen sealed the match with another goal two minutes later.

Last chance for Nepal

source: myrepublica.com

Kathmandu, 1 Nov 2009 - Nepal have slim chances of qualifying for the final round of AFC U-19 Championships after they lost two of the three qualifiers. Nepal still hope for the best.

Tajikistan have almost qualified for the final round, whereas Jordan, Nepal and Yemen are vying for the second spot. Tajikistan, till now, are on the top slot with 9 points in their coffer. Similarly, Jordan have 7 points, while Yemen with 5 and Nepal with 3 points are pitted against the champions.

Nepal, with very slim chances of qualifying, will face Jordan on Sunday. Nepal must win the match to keep qualifying chances alive. A loss or draw will sweep away Nepal´s chances of qualifying. Nepali football lovers may hope for a win, keeping the last two performances in mind. But, Nepali team must learn from their mistakes. Nepal conceded 6 goals and most of them were the results of their own mistakes. Nepal could not maintain early lead in the match against Tajikistan.

Nepal have scored 3 goals till now. Nirajan Malla scored 2 while Shiva Shrestha scored 1. But, scoring goals is not sufficient for victory; they should stop opponents from creating scoring chances. Even though Nepal conceded goals, they had an experienced defense line-up of Rohit Chand and Captain Deepak Bhusal in the last three games. But, it will not be the same on Sunday. Deepak can´t play the vital match against Jordan as he was sent off in the last match with double bookings.

Nepali Coach Raju Shakya warned players not to make silly mistakes in his briefing. “We had to pay for simple errors in previous matches”, said Shakya. “I have shown my strong concern about these issues while briefing the players.”

“Sunday´s match is a do-or-die match for us,” Shakya added, “Every player knows this fact and I hope for their hundred percent in the ground.”

The match is equally important for Jordan. Defeat or draw for them may feeble their qualifying chances. Thus, Jordan will be tough opponents for Nepal.

Sunday´s matches
Kyrgyzstan Vs Palestine - 12.00 (Dasharath Stadium)
Nepal Vs Jordan - 2.30 (Dasharath Stadium)
Yemen Vs Tajikistan - 2.00 (Halchowk Ground)