The AFC has confirmed new competition dates for the rest of the Asian Qualifiers for the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022.
The second round of the Asian Qualifiers is intended to be completed by June 15, 2021. Match Days 7 and 8 will take place in March 2021 while Match Days 9 and 10 will be played in June. The final round of qualifiers will then begin in September 2021.
Both the AFC and FIFA agreed that the final round of Asian Qualifiers should be finished by the end of March 2022. The Asian and Inter-Continental Play-offs are then slated for May/June 2022.
The new dates were approved by the AFC Competitions Committee.
A bidding process for the AFC U23 Asian Cup 2022 was also agreed upon. The hosting rights will be open to member associations in the West region of the AFC.
China was set to be the host for AFC U23 Asian Cup 2022, however the Chinese Football Association has told the AFC that it will be unable to stage the tournament. China is also due to host the AFC Asian Cup 2023.
The AFC said that it intends for the AFC U23 Asian Cup (in non-Olympic years) to be hosted by the country staging the next AFC Asian Cup. The AFC U23 Asian Cup will act as a preparatory competition for the host nation.
During the meeting the Chair of the AFC Competitions Committee, Dr. Tran Quoc Tuan thanked Qatar and the Qatar FA for successfully hosting the recent AFC Champions League (West) and for its preparations for the upcoming AFC Champions League (East).
“We have successfully completed the AFC Champions League in the West and in just a few days, we will kick-off the competition for the East region clubs. Our sincere thanks go to the Qatar Football Association and the Qatar Government as well as our congratulations to the AFC Administration,”.
“They have done an excellent job. I am sure they will build on their expertise to stage an outstanding tournament, including the Final on December 19. At all times the safety and health of all the players, teams and officials have been and remain our priority.”
The AFC Competitions Committee also confirmed that the AFC U-19 Championship, which was due to take place in Uzbekistan in October 2020 will now be played from March 3 to 20, 2021.