Press Conference: Graham Roberts on AFC Challenge Cup 2012

28th February, 2012

Graham Roberts had an press conference ahead of the most anticipated AFC Challenge Cup in Kathmandu.

Here's the summary of the press conference.

Roberts on Player selecton process

'We had 6-7 weeks of traiining. We started from 30 players and now we are down to 21. One player will go down on friday and it will be a striker. Coach Roberts wanted 23 papers on board but ANFA convinced him for 20 players only'

Roberts on strikers

'People will point to strikers for goal, i am backing all my strikers as he (Graham Roberts) has not seen any better striker than the current players.'

Roberts on performance

' If we play as much as in India and take our chances, we have every chance to produce results. We must try to build confidence for players. All teams in the tournament have better players than in the SAFF Championship. This is the biggest and will be the best tournament ever.'

'Good teams sometimes do not win the tournament. We have to perform better than in India. Hopefully, Bharat wants to be in his best position i.e midfield and not play upfront. Our major goal will be  to reach the semis.'

Roberts on Players cuts

'Jagjeet Shrestha needs to perform consistently and have to improve in movement. Bikash singh Chhetri was underperforming but played well for the club. Our biggest lost is Bijay Gurung.'

Roberts on results

'We are looking to play as we did in SAFF Championship New Delhi, India. We had altogether 65 attempts throughout the tournament but had a lower conversion rate which we need to improve. Sandeep and Bikash felt asleep and those mistakes cost us the tournament and berth in the final.'

Roberts on fans

' I would like the fans to come to the stadium and support. Get behind the team and help us excel our performance. The more noise and support, better our players will play.'

Roberts on new players

' Tek Bahadur (wingers that's why we play wing backs), Bharat Pandey (midfielder same position as Raju Tamang) and Navayug Shrestha (young boy upcoming for the future).'

We at will wish all best of luck to our skipper Sagar Thapa, coach Graham Roberts and the whole national squad for the success in upcoming AFC Challenge Cup 2012 competition.

mages: Shabda Shrestha