KATHMANDU, Mar 1: All Nepal Football Association (ANFA) has extended contract of national football team Head Coach Gyotoku Koji’s for a year on Wednesday. The Japanese international’s contract ended on February. ANFA also extended Chiaki Takeda’s contract as Technical Director for the national football team.
Takeda, a Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) expert, was also appointed as Football Advisor for ANFA for one year under JICA’s initiative. The appointment will end on February 16, 2019.
Head Coach Koji has made South Asian Football Federation (SAFF) competition as his major target in his new contract period. He also said that Nepal made noticeable progress in his two-year tenure winning the Solidarity Cup and qualifying for Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Asia Cup qualifiers. “We have improved technically. We still need to keep the good work going. Our immediate target is to win the SAFF competition. We will start practicing for that,” said Koji during the contract signing program. The coach will announce the preliminary squad for the final round match against Yemen under AFC qualifiers tournament on Sunday and start practicing for the marquee event.
ANFA President Narendra Shrestha said that Takeda will now work as representative of JICA as well as Japan government in dual roles of technical director for the national team and advisor for football association. According to JICA, the purpose of this technical assistance from an individual expert is for strengthening and promoting Nepali football. “The primary objective of Takeda’s appointment is to enhance the organizational capacity of ANFA, especially through the establishment of Technical Department for strengthening the performance of Nepali football through establishment of coach education system, strengthening and promoting under 14 (U-14) men’s and women’s national football team and developing football from the grass root level,” JICA said in its press release.
The Nepali Football Team earlier this year had visited Japan upon invitation from Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Japan and Japan Football Association (JFA). JFA has been helping Nepali Football as two Japanese nationals are working as head coach and technical director for the national team. ANFA officially requested the Japanese Government to dispatch technical director for continuing the support by JFA. Koji is the head Coach of the Nepal national team since 2016 March and Takeda the Technical Director at ANFA and working on the coaching of Nepali football coaches since 2016 February.
The involvement of Japanese professionals has made positive impact as the national team emerged victorious in the AFC Solidarity Cup in Nov 2016 and similar other desired results are expected in coming days as well.
Japan to aid Rs 7.4 million to upgrade ANFA complex
KATHMANDU, Mar 1: The government of Japan is set to provide Rs 7.4 million aid to upgrade the ANFA complex, the administrative football center of Nepal. Ambassador of Japan to Nepal Masashi Ogawa and General Secretary of ANFA Dhirendra Pradhan signed the agreement amid a function at Satdobato, Lalitpur on Wednesday.
In light of approaching Olympics 2020 set to be organized in Tokyo, Japan government is providing monetary assistance to more than 100 countries under the program ‘Sports for Tomorrow’ including Nepal. “We are helping Nepal under ‘Grant Assistance for Cultural Grass-root Project’ under our program for summer and Para-Olympics being organized in Tokyo,” said Ogawa.
According to the contract, ‘players’ dressing room’ will be upgraded to international standard, new toilets will be built and an office for technical director will be set up in the complex premises. “We were struggling to host matches at the complex after the damages we suffered during the 2015 April earthquake. The aid from Japan will help us to rise again,” said Narendra Shrestha, the general secretary at the ANFA.