Kiran Chemzong, Sagar Thapa, Bhola Silwal or Anil Gurung are a few names of which few have heard and that’s because all of them came from Nepal. More exactly, from Nepal national football team and it isn’t a joke! This state has such a squad, with poor results to be honest, but it exists.
Sure, you will say that Nepal means 80% territory covered by mountains with a average height of 6000 meters and a landscape where you can see rhinos, tigers or yacs, in any case not a quality football. So this is a blog about this sport and why should I speak about some Nepalese?
Well actually, Nepal means a lot more things. For example, the tight between two big religions such are Buddhism and Hinduism generated here a special belief, known simply as Nepalese religion. A religion that has, besides other facts, temples which have walls with figures that share pornographic positions! But also in Nepal you can find more than 60 ethnic groups, the same number of dialects and also many villages at more than 2.500 meters altitude, with not a single car or modern road. Peace, quiet and also a lot of suspended hand-made bridges that help people to pass over deep valleys, all thanks to Sir Edmond Hillary, the first man to reach the Everest, in 1953.
But if these aren’t so shocking facts and maybe ones of them are familiar to you, I am sure that few knew that there, in Nepal, a young football player attracted Arsenal, Tottenham and Lille’s attention just two months ago. Rohit Chand was born on 1st of March 1992 in Surkhet and became the younger footballer to ever play for the Nepalese senior national team on 23th of March 2009. In total, he has 14 caps and at the time he attracted Arsenal’s interest, the defender was playing in India, at Hindustan Aeronautics Limited, a team founded in 2006. Unfortunately the move hasn’t been made yet, but has some chances, because Rohit is now a free agent.
And not the fact that three great clubs from Europe are watching him is so important, but the fact that no footballer from this country has ever played in any European professional league. His luck may be Graham Roberts, Nepal’s national football team coach and former player at Chelsea and Tottenham. And if he says that Chand is good enough to play in Premier League in the near future, it might be a thing that we can talk about. Maybe the strict rules for non European footballers will stop him from reaching the English football, but Lille is a great chance to improve his career. Still, it is difficult if we consider that he did not play a single official game for two months, when he appeared in Nepal – Jordan 1-1, in a World Cup qualifier match. It sounds like a good result but that happens only because Jordan secured the break through from the first leg. Well, Nepal had good results in recent years and their way of playing increased, but at Amman they were embarrassed by a 0-9 loss. And Rohit played in defense for his team… Luckily, age is on his side and let’s hope that player from Nepal will remain in the history books as the first to play in a powerful European team.
More likely was that he would eventually join Kettering Town from the fifth English division, to accustom there with the kind of football played in the Island, but some fans advised him not to do so, because English football below Championship is weaker than soccer played in Malaysia, for example. It’s hard to tell if he followed their opinion, but in the end he did not join the club, but did not join another one either.