By a Staff Reporter
Kathmandu – The Head Coach of the Nepal National Football Team Vincenzo Alberto Annese, has picked up his 23-member squad for the upcoming SAFF Championship 2023, set to take place in Bengaluru, India.
The All Nepal Football Association (ANFA) revealed the final squad for the championship, which includes the inclusion of promising young midfielder Laken Limbu, full-back Simanta Thapa, and Bimal Panday for their debut appearance.
In a surprising turn of events, Vincenzo has opted to exclude Bikram Lama, and Gillespye Jung Karki, who was doing exceptionally well in the ongoing Martyr’s Memorial ‘A’ Division League. Moreover, Ashish Gurung, Anjal Maharjan, Sudip Gurung, Bishal Tamang, and Dinesh Henjan from the preliminary squad have also been left out. This decision reflects the coach’s strategic choices as he finalizes the team composition for the SAFF Championship.
Prior to traveling to India, the Nepal National Team will engage in a preparatory match against the Philippines on June 15. This friendly encounter will serve as a valuable opportunity for the team to fine-tune their skills and tactics before the championship.
Nepal finds itself placed in a challenging group alongside Kuwait, India, and Pakistan. The team’s first match will be against Kuwait on June 21, followed by a highly anticipated encounter against India on June 24. The group stage will conclude with Nepal facing Pakistan on June 27. The top two teams from each group will advance to the semi-finals of the championship.
Goalkeepers: Kiran Chemjong (RG Punjab FC), Deep Karki (Manang Marsyangdi Club), Bishal Shrestha (Machhindra Football Club)
Defenders: Bimal Panday (Tribhuvan Army Football Club), Sanish Shrestha (APF Football Club), Ananta Tamang (Church Boys United), Devendra Tamang (Machhindra Football Club), Nishant Khadka (Sankata Club), Rohit Chand (Persic Kedri), Simanta Thapa (Jawalakhel Youth Club)
Midfielders: Pujan Uperkoti (Machhindra Football Club), Arik Bista (Church Boys United), Nabin Lama (APF Football Club), Mani Kumar Lama (APF Football Club), Laken Limbu (Three Star Club), Avas Lamichhane (APF Football Club)
Forwards: Ayush Ghalan (Sankata Club), Nawayug Shrestha (Tribhuvan Army Football Club), Dipak Raj Singh Thakuri (Satdobato Youth Club), Anjan Bista (Church Boys United), Manish Dangi (Sankata Club), Aashish Chaudhary (Church Boys United), Bimal Gharti Magar (Machhindra Football Club)