HIMALAYAN NEWS SERVICE
LALITPUR: The AFC U-14 Boys Festival of Football ended here with the hosts Nepal defeating Bangladesh 3-0 in a football match here at the ANFA Complex today.
The match between the hosts and Bangladesh was one of the three 60-minute games played here today. India won the other two matches of the day. They hammered Bhutan 6-0 and beat Sri Lanka 2-0.
The U-14 football matches was one of the several development programmes held under the Festival of Football here for the last two weeks. Apart from the competition, the 14-day Festival offered the Referee Course, ‘C’ Certificate Coaching Course, Head Coaches’ Workshop and Football Medicine Course.
AFC Head of Youth Football John Whittle said: “I have seen a huge improvement in referees, coaches, physios and players since the start of the Festival.” Whittle said that the participating teams have made a huge impression over the last two weeks. “The Festival is not just about the team but about the development of individuals on and off the pitch,” he said.
“Some of you still need to keep working hard. You need to be have more dedication and focus if you are to represent your country in future,” said Whittle. ANFA Vice President Narendra Shrestha thanked all the participants for their cooperation during their stay in Nepal.
National Sports Council Member Secretary Yubaraj Lama presented medals and certificates to all five participating U-14 football teams from Nepal, India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Bhutan. Coaching Instructor Vincent Subramaniam gave away the certificates to the ‘C’ Certificate Coaching Course participants, while Referee Instructor Noboru Ishiyama presented the certificates to the Referee Course participants.
ANFA Vice Presidents Lalit Krishna Shrestha, CEO Indra Man Tuladhar and General Secretary Dhirendra Pradhan among others were also present on the occasion.
Nepali team skipper Heman Thapa Magar, meanwhile, said the competition has given them a great confidence to play international matches. “The Festival taught us about confidence, respect and discipline,” added Thapa Magar. Thapa Magar believed that of the two formats they played in the Festival matches, the 30-minute game was more exhausting to its shortness.
“The experiece I have gained from Festival will certainly help me while representing my coutry in international tournaments,” said Thapa Magar.