Nepal is playing against Australia today in the final match of the second round of the joint selection of the World Cup 2022 and Asia Cup 2023.
The match in Kuwait City will start at 9:45 pm Nepali time. Nepal, who reached Kuwait to play the remaining three games after the Corona epidemic, had earlier beaten Chinese Taipei 2-0 and lost 3-0 to Jordan.
Nepal, which is in Group B, has already been eliminated from the World Cup qualifiers and now it is time to reach the next round of the Asia Cup.
If Nepal beats Australia and the results of the other teams are favorable, then Nepal will be in the top four of the group and will reach the third round of the Asia Cup qualifiers. As this equation is almost impossible, Nepal will now have to play in the playoffs to play in the third round of the Asia Cup.
Nepal, which has played seven games in the group stage, has added six points with two wins and five losses.
Nepal had earlier played Australia in the 2019 World Cup qualifiers. Nepal had lost the match 5-0 in Canberra.
Nepal’s coach Abdullah Almutairi has said that he will focus on performance rather than results against Australia. He hopes to do well against Australia in the pre-match conference on Thursday. “We have to play another good game. “Our goal is to play better than the result,” he said.
He said that Nepal’s playing style has changed and the results are beginning to be seen. Australian coach Graham Arnold also commented that the playing style of the Nepali team has changed and it is a hardworking team.
Coach Almutairi also made it possible for Nepal’s young players to make their debut against Australia. Two of the six new players in the current Nepali team made their debut in a friendly match against Iraq. Midfielder Manish Dangi and defender Gautam Shrestha played in the first selection against Iraq. Manis then played both the selection games while Gautam played only against Chinese Taipei.
Apart from this, midfielders Ayush Ghalan, Suraj Ju Thakuri and Kamal Thapa are yet to make their debuts. Similarly, goalkeeper Vishal Sunar is also in the national team for the first time. Apart from that, goalkeeper Deep Karki, who was included in the team for the friendly match against Bangladesh last November, is yet to make his debut.
Almutairi said Ayush, Suraj and Kamal would not play in the first-choice match against Australia but there is a possibility of playing. If all goes well, they will play. “I know it will be difficult to play against Australia but they need to play to raise their standards.”
Australia tops the group with 100 per cent wins, winning six games in a row. After winning against Nepal, Australia will make it to the third round of the World Cup qualifiers and will be directly selected in the Asia Cup.