Kathmandu, August 9
The Nepal national football team will play its first match of the FIFA World Cup 2022 Preliminary Competition and AFC Asian Cup China 2023 Qualifiers in Kuwait.
According to the All Nepal Football Association, the Kuwait FA agreed to swap the two-leg fixtures on Friday morning. Nepal, who were scheduled to take on Kuwait in a home match on September 5, will now play the away match against the same opponents. Nepal will then travel to Chinese Taipei for a match on September 10 before facing Jordan on October 15.
“The ANFA had requested Kuwait FA, Chinese Taipei FA and Jordan FA to swap the fixtures due to the unavailability of the stadium. Chinese Taipei and Jordan agreed to change the fixtures but Kuwait FA had proposed to play both matches in Kuwait,” said the ANFA. The fixtures had come under cloud after FIFA and AFC declined Kuwait’s proposal.
After finishing the away matches, Nepal will host Kuwait on November 19, Chinese Taipei on March 26 next year and Jordan on June 4. The matches against Australia remained unchanged. Nepal will travel to Australia for away match on October 10 and will play home match on March 31 next year.
“As for the home matches, the ANFA is in talks with the National Sports Council and other member associations of the AFC to have it hosted in a neutral venue,” the ANFA said. “We have been coordinating with the Ministry of Youth and Sports and the National Sports Council to host Nepal’s match on November 19 in Nepal. If we foresee the facilities in Nepal will not be ready by then we shall go for a neutral venue,” ANFA Spokesperson Kiran Rai told the official website.
A version of this article appears in print on August 10, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.