Nepali football's fixtures postponed, againThe All Nepal Football Association had already named 34 players for the preliminary selection, conducted PCR tests of all of them and planned to start the closed camp training from August 17.
Nepal's remaining fixtures of the Asian qualifiers of FIFA World Cup 2022 and AFC Asian Cup 2023 have been postponed for the second time owing to the coronavirus pandemic.
According to a statement released by the Asian Football Confederation, the AFC and international football governing body FIFA had decided to postpone Asia's all remaining matches to next year with a view to protecting the health and safety of all participants. However, no date has been announced.
Had the matches taken place as per the original fixture dates, Nepal should have played the three remaining matches by June 9. As per the fixture published after the first postponement, Nepal were scheduled to host Chinese Taipei on October 8, Australia on October 13 and Jordan on November 12.
"FIFA and the Asian Football Confederation have jointly decided that the upcoming qualifying matches for the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 and AFC Asian Cup China 2023, originally scheduled to take place during the international match windows in October and November 2020, will be rescheduled to 2021," reads the AFC statement.
"With the aim of protecting the health and safety of all participants, FIFA and the AFC will continue to work together to closely monitor the situation in the region and to identify new dates for the respective qualifying matches.”
Further details on the new dates for the next round of qualifying matches for the FIFA World Cup 2022 and the AFC Asian Cup 2023 are said to be announced in due course.
The All Nepal Football Association (ANFA) has already named 34 players for the preliminary selection and conducted PCR tests of all of them. The football governing body had planned to start the closed camp training from August 17.
Apart from players, ANFA also conducted the PCR tests of three dozen individuals who were expected to have contact with the team. They included coaches, officials, kitchen staff, cleaners and caretakers of the ANFA hostel as they were set to be housed at the ANFA hostel in Satdobato.
"Now all the players will be released by ANFA. We will start the next training once the AFC publishes new fixtures," said national team manager Madhusudan Upadhyaya.