All Nepal Football Association (ANFA) has announced the preliminary squad for the AFC Asian Cup 2019 Qualifiers on Thursday, February 9, 2017.
Nepal’s national football team head coach Gyotoku Koji has added 13 more players to the 23 players list. The training for the preliminary squad will start from February 12, 2017.
As Manang Marshyandi Club (MMC) is going to participate in Sk Kamal International Cup in Bangladesh, its players will join the squad later. The Sk Kamal International Cup is scheduled to kick off from February 18, 2017.
Nepal will take on Philippines in its first match of the AFC Asian Cup 2019 Qualifiers on March 28, 2017 at the Rizal Memorial Stadium in Manila.
The preliminary squad includes – first 23 players - Bikesh Kuthu, Rabin Shrestha, Biraj Maharjan, Ananta Tamang, Deepak Gurung, Aditya Chaudhary, Bimal Gharti Magar, Bishal Rai, Ranjan Bista, Anil Gurung, Heman Gurung, Bikram Lama, Kamal Shrestha, Anjan Bista, Sujal Shrestha, Kiran Chemjong, Suman Lama, Nawayug Shrestha, Devendra Tamang, Bishal Shrestha, Bharat Khawas, Rajendra Rawal and Ranjit Dhimal.
Additional 13 players are - Alan Neupane, Karna Limbu, Yubaraj Khadka, Rabi Paswan, Bishow Adhikari, Bimal Panday, Sunil Bal, Jitendra Karki, Man Bahadur Tamang, Dinesh Rajbanshi, Rohit Chand, Hemanta Thapa Magar and Bimal Basnet.
As per the draw of AFC held in Abu Dhabi, UAE, in January 23, 2017, Nepal is in Group F of the Qualifiers with Yemen, Tajikistan and the Philippines.
Altogether, 24 teams will compete in the third round of AFC Asian Cup. These teams are drawn into six groups of four.
Jordan, Oman, Philippines, Bahrain, Kyrgyz Republic, DPR Korea, India, Palestine, Tajikistan, Vietnam, Hong Kong, Turkmenistan, Maldives, Lebanon, Yemen, Afghanistan, Chinese Taipei, Myanmar, Malaysia, Singapore, Cambodia, Nepal, Bhutan and Macau.
Group A: A1 Kyrgyz Republic A2 India A3 Myanmar A4 Macau
Group B: B1 DPR Korea B2 Hong Kong B3 Lebanon B4 Malaysia
Group C: C1 Jordan C2 Vietnam C3 Afghanistan C4 Cambodia
Group D: D1 Oman D2 Palestine D3 Maldives D4 Bhutan
Group E: E1 Bahrain E2 Turkmenistan E3 Chinese Taipei E4 Singapore
Group F: F1 Philippines F2 Tajikistan F3 Yemen F4 Nepal
The total of 12 teams - winners and runners-up from each group will qualify for the final competition of the AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019. The host UAE, Qatar, South Korea, Japan, Thailand, Saudi Arabia, Australia, Uzbekistan, Syria, Iran and China are already in the final.