17 December 2013

Club football requires common sense reforms

Poor policies leading to poor crowds at Dasharath Rangashala
(This article originally appeared in Republica)

Nepal´s top-level football clubs have to sign a minimum of 16 players in April, but the league does not start until late December. Most teams play matches for only around 5 months in a calendar year, but are required to pay players for 12 months worth of service. The dates, formats and participants of important tournaments are anyone´s guess and usually only revealed at the last hour.

Such poor planning and coordination between the All Nepal Football Association (ANFA) and clubs has left Nepali club football on the brink.

Nepal´s oldest club New Road Team (NRT) has called it quits on the ´A´ Division this year. Another historic club, Rani Pokhari Corner Team (RCT), may follow suit and has already decided not to participate in the ongoing Ncell Cup, the richest domestic cup tournament. Whispers at Nepal´s national stadium, Dasharath Rangashala, suggest that several other prominent clubs are also contemplating their footballing future.