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Incompetence Of ANFA Destroying Nepal Football (Senior Columnist Sushil Thapa Writes..)
Aug 13, 2017 08:08:06 AM - Incompetence Of ANFA Destroying Nepal Football (Senior Columnist Sushil Thapa Writes..)
By Sushil Thapa, Fairfax, VA

Nepal had to endure huge disappointment and to some degree humiliation in the recently concluded 2018 Under-23 Asian Football Confederation qualifiers in the United Arab Emirates.

I would call it high expectations and disappointing result, and it's back to square one. True, they were up against formidable opponents, however, the kind of performance they put in was sloppy, inexcusable and unexpected.

Despite not admitting and bemoaning the team’s poor performance, Coach Raju Shakya contributed the setback to the hot weather, physical strength and physicality of the opponents.

We are aware that one of the major factors resulting in the debacle was the team’s unpreparedness for a tournament of this magnitude, which Coach Shakya intentionally refrained from addressing it.

Understandably, it seemed though, he did not want to put the blame on the All Nepal Football Association (ANFA) and risk his job.

We must not forget the role and responsibilities of a head coach. It involves so much more than just coaching.He is the captain of the ship and responsible for the team’s overall success. He must have players and team’s best interests in mind.

He has to be truthful and forthcoming when it comes to discussing all the factors affecting team’s match performance.

To be fair, coaching profession is very challenging, frustrating and even more so in the context of Nepal football. His/her performance constantly comes under sport goers evaluation and scrutiny, but that does not mean that he should live in denial, compromising his integrity and credibility.

The fact of the matter is, homegrown coaches have to be in the good books of ANFA to get considered for the head coaching position of the national team.

It doesn't really matter whether the coach is mediocre or high-achieving if  he has the blessings of the football association, he has a better shot at landing himself the job.

Ultimately it is down to the players to get the results on the field, and when they underachieve, they are unfairly scapegoated, most of the time.

It is the responsibility of the coach to prioritize the needs of players when preparing for any competition. He must do whatever it takes to do it. Forgetting not, good coaches take responsibility for their team’s failures

Back to the tournament, taking into account Nepal’s overall performance, I have no hesitation to rate it disastrous.They underperformed in all aspects of the game and pretty much looked mediocre, dejected, uninspired and beaten up at the end of the day.

They struggled from the start of the tournament and were unable to turn things around especially following their defeat to the United Arab Emirates in the opener. What we witnessed was a listless performance with the team unable to score a single goal in three matches. That pretty much sums it up.

The poor result is a reminder to us all about the falling standards of football in Nepal. This unfortunate decline is a direct result of decades of gross mismanagement, poor governance, corruption, incompetent leadership and lack of accountability of the ANFA.

It would be fair to say ANFA’s total inability to do anything to turn things around is the root of the problem. What baffles me most is the fact that they fail to acknowledge their mistakes nor learn from their mistakes and continue to repeat the same mistakes because they ignore it. They just do not care or are just ignorant. As a result, Nepal football has paid a heavy price for their disastrous administration.

ANFA President Narendra Shrestha is an even bigger disaster than you thought. His administration failure to organize even the national football league speaks volumes about his incompetence and poor leadership.

Unfortunately, there is no one to hold him and his administration accountable for their failure. The government is paying little or no attention to sports development and they do not give a damn how sport associations are run.

Long as Mr.Shrestha and his band of incapable executives are in charge, I am afraid nothing is going to change, and players woes will continue unabated and football will further go down into the abyss.
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