Saturday, October 9, 2010

Asian Games: Malaysia in Group A

Malaysia has been drawn in Group A togather with China, Kyrgyzstan and Japan for the football tournament of the XVI Asian Games which will be held in Guanmgzhou, China from 7-26 Nov 2010.

The opening match will be played 5 days prior to the opening ceremony at Haixinsha Island in the Pearl River.

The competition, like the Olympic football tournament, will be an Under-23 tournament with three over aged players allowed per squad. The players born on or after 1 January 1987 will be eligible as U-23 players.

The football competitions will be played across seven venues - Ying Dong Stadium, Huadu Stadium, Huangpu Stadium, Yuexiu Stadium, Guangdong People’s Stadium, Huagdong Stadium and Tianhe Stadium.

The event will see 24 teams divided into six groups of four teams, each with the top two sides from each group plus the four best third placed teams making it into the Round of 16. From there on it would be a knockout tournament.

Defending Asian Games champions Qatar have been handed a relatively easy group in the 52-match show. Qatar, who defeated Iraq 1-0 in the final of the last edition of the Asian Games held in in their own backyard, are being placed in Group D alongside Kuwait, India and Singapore.

Meanwhile the Pakistani football team, which was deleted from the Asian Games on 28 June, has been included after the President of Pakistan Football Federation Makhdoom Syed Faisal Saleh Hayat offered to bear the expenses of the team’s participation in the Asian Games. Since the 2002 Busan Games, football at the Asian Games changed its age-limit and now it is an “U23 + 3 over age” tournament.

It will be Pakistan’s eighth trip to the Asian Games who have appeared in seven editions out of 15 so far.

Moving into the knockout stages is surely possible for the Akhtar Mohiuddin’s boys from Group-F but for that, a win against Maldives is a must plus good results against Thailand and the mighty Omanis.

Hosts China were slotted in Group A along with Malaysia, Kyrgyzstan and Japan. Group B includes Iran, Vietnam, Bahrain and Turkmenistan while Group C comprise of Korea Republic, Palestine, Jordan and DPR Korea. Uzbekistan, UAE, Hong Kong and Bangladesh form Group E.


Group A: China, Malaysia, Kyrgyzstan, Japan  
Group B: Iran, Vietnam, Bahrain, Turkmenistan            
Group C: Korea Republic, Palestine, Jordan, DPR Korea        
Group D: Qatar, Kuwait, India, Singapore       
Group E: Uzbekistan, UAE, Hong Kong, Bangladesh   
Group F: Pakistan, Thailand, Maldives, Oman .

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