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Kalin hails Nepal's resilience

Taipei: Head coach Johan Kalin didn't hide his pride after Nepal defeated Chinese Taipei 2-0 in their Asian Qualifiers Group B tie at the Taipei Municipal Stadium on Tuesday. 

Anjan Bista's brace may have given the South Asians the three points but Kalin said it was teamwork which got Nepal the result, one which came just days after they had suffered a 7-0 defeat to Kuwait in their opening FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 and AFC Asian Cup China 2023 qualifying tie.

A lesser team might not have been up to the task following such a heavy defeat but Kalin said Nepal's resilience showed the promise they have.

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"It is a great win. A few days ago, we suffered a big loss. It happens in football," said Kalin at the post-match press conference.

"In the (2014) FIFA World Cup, Brazil suffered a heavy loss against Germany. If Brazil can lapse, it can happen to any team.

"However, the boys gave everything today. They performed well and achieved a good result," said the Swede, who took charge of Nepal last January.

Chinese Taipei had gone into the match confident of their chances against a team, who at a FIFA World Ranking of 166, were 41 spots below the East Asians.

Louis Lancaster's side had, despite losing 2-1 to Jordan, impressed in their opener but were rocked by 21-year-old Bista's fourth minute opener and failure to put away their chances after that saw Chinese Taipei being hit by a second goal from the Nepal forward in the 62nd minute.

Kalin congratulated his team's ability to remain focused despite the tough experience they had endured against Kuwait.

"After the last match, we needed to concentrate on our game. We knew it would be a tough fight against the hosts but the boys played well and I am very happy with them," added Kalin.

The win, said Kalin, was just a step forward in Nepal's journey towards becoming a force in the Continent.

"We are taking small steps forward. It takes time to build a good team. But a win is always nice to get," concluded Kalin.

The win took Nepal to fourth in the Group B standings but with their confidence boosted, Kalin's team will be eager to face 2015 AFC Asian Cup winners Australia in Canberra on October 10, which will then be followed by a visit to Amman to play Jordan five days later.

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