BANGKOK: Nepal is playing its first match against Uzbekistan at the AFC U-16 Championship on Sunday with an aim to qualify for the U-17 World Cup.
During the pre-match conference on Saturday, Coach Balgopal Maharjan said that the team has improved a lot as compared to the past and is in Thailand to book its place for the world cup.
Nepal has been drawn in Group ‘C’ of the tournament along with Uzbekistan, Kuwait and North Korea.
“Uzbekistan and North Korea are stronger teams than Kuwait. All of them worked hard during qualifying rounds. Our training after passing through the qualifiers was of high standard,” Maharjan said. “I have strong belief in my team. We will qualify for the world cup.”
According to him, Nepali players have improved a lot in terms of team spirits, morale and skills.
Nepali team underwent training at Royal Thai Army Stadium today. However, Captain Bimal Gharti Magar, who injured his left leg during friendly match with Thailand, didn’t attend the training.
Team Manager Dinesh Byanjankar said that he has been given rest as he is recovering from the injury.
Bimal will miss first match of the tournament as he had received two yellow cards during qualifying match held in Kathmandu. Ananta Tamang will lead the team in absence of Bimal.
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