Nepal, India ready to face off each other for friendlies in Kathmandu
Indian and Nepalese football teams are set to face each other for a friendly match scheduled for Thursday and Sunday in Kathmandu, the head coaches of both nations announced.
"It's not gonna be easy but the boys worked really hard, really well, I am happy with what they have done in the training pitch. I expect them to fight for their places on the pitch, for the team for the upcoming South Asian Football Federation (SAFF) games, it's time to prove that these are the positions that would give chance to prove themselves," Igor Stamic, coach of the Indian men's senior national team said during the pre-match conference.
The Indian men's senior national team arrived in Nepal on August 30, to play back-to-back international friendlies against Nepal on September 2 and 5.
The 25-member Indian contingent flew out from New Delhi where they had assembled overnight after the completion of the preparatory camp in Kolkata which had kicked off on August 15.
"The game which will start late on Thursday evening is expected to be a tough one for India as Nepal would be playing in its home ground giving it an benefit," team captain Sunil Chhetri said.
The last time the Indian senior team visited Nepal was in 2015, wherein their away match in the play-offs for the 2018 World Cup qualifiers ended goalless, thus enabling them to qualify for the qualifiers by virtue of their 2-0 victory in the first leg. The Blue Tigers had their first practice session in Kathmandu on Tuesday.
The Nepali team which had been in practice for months also has announced that they have prepared well for the match scheduled for Thursday and Sunday and would help in preparing for the upcoming SAFF Games.
"We started preparations before two months. We had training camps in Kathmandu and Pokhara, we came back one week before. We studied the Indian team very well but our focus, our target will be SAFF Games, this is only two countries friendly game to take the lessons from two games and what we can do to fix all the mistakes before SAAF Cup," Abdullah Almutairi, head coach of Nepali team said.