Football team crashes out of Asian Games

Kathmandu, August 19

Nepal U-23 men’s football team crashed out from the group stage following their 2-1 loss at the hands of Pakistan in the third match of the tournament at the Patriot Chandrabhaga Stadium.

After opening the campaign with an impressive 1-0 loss against Japan in the first match, Nepal went 2-0 down to Vietnam in the second game. On Sunday, Nepal took the lead in the 12th minute thanks to an own goal from Pakistan’s Shahbaz Younas, who buried the ball into his own nets while trying to clear an attempt from Rohit Chand. The goal was Nepal’s first in 36 years and overall second in the Asian Games.

Pakistan levelled the scores in the 54th minute when Muhammad Bilal found the back of the nets. Pakistan went ahead in the 72nd minute after Chand committed a foul inside the penalty box and Saddam Hussain converted the resulting penalty.

YB Ghale had netted first goal in Nepal’s 3-1 loss against Kuwait in New Delhi in 1982. That was the first time Nepal participated in the Asian Games and Ghale’s goal was the first official international goal for Nepal. Before leaving for Indonesia, Nepal had played a total of 16 matches in Asian Games and conceded 66 goals scoring just one.


Nepal faced a 33-29 defeat at the hands of hosts Indonesia in the preliminary group round match. Nepal and Indonesia are in Group B along with Japan, Iran, Malaysia and Pakistan. Nepal will now face Japan on Tuesday and take on Iran and Malaysia on Wednesday. Nepal will end the league round campaign with a match against Pakistan on August 23.

(Photo Courtesy: AP/NSC/NSJF)