CNN Qatar has the chance to hold its head up high in the world of football, after the tiny Gulf state made the first major final of its history. Chat with us in Facebook Messenger. Find out what's happening in the world as it unfolds.
Sunil Chhetri has promised that the Indian players will be patient and fully back new coach Igor Stimac to implement his philosophy on the team. Oman coach Pim Verbeek resigned from the post on Wednesday with the former Australia and Korea boss calling time on a year managerial career. Qatar has joined a growing list of recent tournament winners - like Chile, Portugal and France - that functioned almost solely as the reactive team.
Asia's football chief Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim al-Khalifa said Tuesday that China's staging of the Asian Cup would serve as a "launchpad" for the country? China was confirmed earlier Tuesday as host at the AFC? Last month South Korea abandoned their bid to stage the tournament, leaving China as the sole candidates with a free run to become hosts.
It was originally scheduled to be held in Jordan between 7 and 22 Aprilbut later was changed to 6 to 20 April Japan defeated Australia 1—0 in the final to win their second consecutive title. In the third-place match the same day, China defeated Thailand 3—1. The draw for the qualifiers was held on 21 January
For the first time, the Asian Cup final tournament was contested by 24 teams, having been expanded from the team format that was used from to Under this new format, the finalists would contest a group stage consisting of six groups of four teams, followed by a knockout stage of 16 teams. The host nation qualified for the final tournament automatically, while the remaining 23 places were determined among the other 45 national teams of the AFC through a qualifying competition running from topart of which also served as part of the FIFA World Cup qualification process for the confederation.
Bhutan joined the federation in and Afghanistan in Because of health issues inRodrigo Ranjith replaced Salahuddin as acting president for two months. Rankings are calculated by FIFA.
When it comes to the Asian Cup however, there can be no complaints. Indeed when the captain of the one of the finalists calls for no more stupidity the day before the big game, then there is a problem. Yoshida had surely been expecting to lift the trophy in Abu Dhabi on Friday but it was Qatar who delivered a surprise and won the final — deservedly so.
But then football has always liked to sell itself as an intangible global force for good, as opposed to a highly successful global force for merchandising, sponsorship and soft power. It is a process laid out in the most fascinating way at the current Asian Cup. The tournament has already entered its endgame.
Iran go into the tournament as favorites after dominating Asian soccer over the last four years. They have only lost one competitive game since the last Asian Cup inand that loss was to Spain. Former Real Madrid and Portugal coach Carlos Queiroz has created such a solid and organized back-line that Iran managed to go twelve matches without conceding a single goal during qualifying for the World Cup. If Iran are the immovable defensive object, then South Korea may well be the irresistible attacking force of the Asian Cup with in-form Tottenham Hotspur forward Son Heung-min spearheading an attack full of talent.