HomeFootballQatar Steps In As 2023 Asian Cup Host

Qatar Steps In As 2023 Asian Cup Host

Qatar Asia Cup

Qatar Steps In As 2023 Asian Cup Host

The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) have announced that Qatar will host the 2023 Asian Cup following the withdrawal of the previously planned hosts China.

Originally set to play in 10 in cities throughout China, the former hosts pulled out earlier this year due to their ‘zero-covid’ policy.

Australia was a contender to replace China as host having submit an expression of interest with the AFC in July, however, Football Australia withdrew from the race to focus on hosting the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup alongside New Zealand, as well as bidding on the 2026 AFC Women’s Asia Cup.

Qatar was chosen above both South Korea and Indonesia, and will make the Asia Cup the second high profile football tournament to be hosted by the country in about a year, following 2022’s FIFA World Cup.

In a statement commenting on the announcement, AFC president, Shaik Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa, said: “Qatar’s capabilities and track record in hosting major international sporting events and their meticulous attention to deal are well admired throughout the globe.”

“With their existing world-class infrastructure and unrivalled hosting capabilities, we are confident that Qatar will stage a worthy spectacle befitting the prestige and status of Asia’s crown jewel” he said.

Similar to the World Cup’s shift from mid-year, to November, to better suit the Qatari climate, the Qatar Football Association (QFA) have proposed the 24-team tournament be shifted to as late as January 2024.

The AFC have noted a potential a return to the Middle East could be on the cards for the 2027 tournament, with Saudi Arabia, joining India, on the shortlist to host.

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