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Footballer Bimal, who trained in Europe, migrates to Australia seeking brighter future

Mired in internal conflicts, ANFA oblivious to it
Laxmi GC

Laxmi GC

 |  Kathmandu

Star Striker Bimal Gharti Magar. (Photo: Saroj Nepal)

As the leadership of All Nepal Football Association (ANFA) is busy with off-field games, the number of Nepali footballers going abroad is increasing.

The star striker of the national football team, Bimal Gharti Magar, has left for abroad recently, keeping the tally on the increase.

More than 50 footballers, including national team members, have made Australia their destination in the last two years, looking for better opportunities.

Bimal, who spent a decade in the national team, jumped on the same bandwagon and left for Australia on Friday. Bimal, a product of ANFA Academy, made his debut in a friendly match against Bangladesh in 2012.

In 2015, under Bimal's captaincy, Nepal won the SAFF U-19 Championship title for the first time.

Prior to that, Bimal stole limelight after he saved Nepal from the defeat by scoring a goal at the last minute against Pakistan in the 2013 SAFF Championship held in Nepal.

Bimal, who faced ups and downs in his football career, got the opportunity to train in various clubs in Europe. At the same time, he also went through a turbulent time in his personal life. He lost his sister while training in Europe.

On September 8, 2018, Bimal scored a 2-0-win against host Bangladesh in the SAFF Championship. In October 2019, he played a match against Myanmar. Following the match against Myanmar, Bimal was initially suspended and then sidelined due to injury.

Bimal Gharti Magar vying for a ball in a match against Pakistan. (Photo: Saroj Nepal)

Four players of the national team, including Bimal, were subject to disciplinary action and missed the World Cup qualifier against Kuwait.

At that time, Bimal was banned for 90 days. Due to the ban, he missed the 13th South Asian Games held at his home ground in December 2019.

After the suspension was lifted, Bimal made a comeback to the football field through Machhindra Club. He also participated in the Mofussil competition and also joined the closed training sessions of the national team.

However, at the same time, he suffered a serious knee injury. At the initiative of ANFA, with the help of the Qatar Football Association, Bimal got the opportunity to undergo treatment in Qatar. After staying in Qatar for almost nine months, he returned to the country and joined A Division Club Machhindra.

Bimal, who also spent last season in Machindra, had to stay out of the field for three weeks due to injury.

Bimal, who is also the marquee of Nepal Super League Club Lalitpur City FC, has canceled his contract and went abroad. Lalitpur already has announced Ananta Tamang as the marquee player this time.

At one time, supporters used to reach the ground just to see Bimal. However, the ANFA leadership failed to pay their attention to the players as they remained busy with the game of chair, of late.

As ANFA is oblivious to the condition and future of the players, the players are being forced to find their future abroad.

Lately, ANFA itself has been in the midst of controversy. A motion of no confidence was also submitted against President Pankaj Nemwang regarding his working style.


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