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AFC invites bids for Asian Cup hosting rights, sets Jun 30 deadline

AFC invites bids for Asian Cup hosting rights, sets Jun 30 deadline

A China fan holds national flag before the AFC Asian Cup quarterfinal soccer match between Iran and China at Mohammed Bin Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, on Jan. 24, 2019. China withdrew as host of soccer's 2023 Asian Cup on Saturday, May 14, 2022, in the latest cancellation of the country's sports hosting duties during the COVID-19 pandemic. (Photo: AP/Kamran Jebreili, File)

The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) invited bids to stage the 2023 Asian Cup on Tuesday (May 31) following China's decision to relinquish its rights to the tournament.

China was due to host the tournament in June and July next year but the country's efforts to follow a zero-COVID policy has resulted in the 24-team event being moved.

"The (AFC) has today issued an Expression of Interest (EoI) invitation to all the AFC Member Associations (MAs) to host the AFC Asian Cup 2023," AFC said in a statement.

"The deadline for interested MAs to submit their EoI ... is Jun 30, 2022."

The selection process has been expedited and the hosts will no longer be selected by AFC's Congress.

Instead, the confederation's administration will define the terms and requirements of the bidding process to find a replacement host and submit a report to allow the AFC's executive committee to make a final decision.

The Japan FA said it has been informally approached about the possibility of replacing China as hosts.

A South Korea FA official said they had a briefing after China relinquished the hosting rights but there was not enough time to deliver a world-class tournament in the country.

 

Source: Reuters

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