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AFC Asian Cup 2023: South Korea set to bid for the hosting rights

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Two-time AFC Asian Cup champion, South Korea, is set to place a bid to host the upcoming AFC Asian Cup 2023.

China was originally awarded to host the 18th edition of the AFC Asian Cup, which has been scheduled to run June-July 2023. But last May, China decided to drop their hosting plan for the AFC Asian Cup 2023 due to the COVID-19 pandemic and their Zero-COVID policy.

China
Image Credit: Twitter

In the meantime, all the 24 teams have confirmed their qualifications for the 18th AFC Asian Cup.  

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While the AFC Asian Cup 2023 is around one year away from the scheduled time, the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) is now finding a new hosting nation through a fresh bid.

South Korea clarified their hosting intention for the AFC Asian Cup 2023

South Korea, AFC Asian Cup 2023
Image Credit: Twitter

In this fresh bidding process, the Korea Football Association (KFA), the South Korean football governing body, has just announced their strong intention to place a bid for hosting the AFC Asian Cup 2023. The deadline for the official bid for hosting the AFC Asian Cup 2023 is 30th June 2022.

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So, KFA has to put their official Asian Cup hosting bid in front of the AFC before June 30. The governing body has just started to set up the applications from the interested hosting cities.

The six-time AFC Asian Cup finalists, including the first two-time winners (1956 and 1960), South Korea previously hosted this quadrennial competition once in 1960. So, then defending champions Taegeuk Warriors also became the first hosts to win that trophy. The country popularly hosted FIFA World Cup 2002 along with Japan. 

Other bidding possibilities

Japan recently claimed that they had been informally approached to bid for the AFC Asian Cup 2023.

Recently, Australia has also shown their interest in hosting the upcoming Asian Cup. They can also place a bid for the 2023 edition. Earlier, in 2015, they hosted this competition for the first time, where they also won that tournament for the first time.

Key factors

AFC
Image Credit: Wikipedia

According to the AFC rules, the hosts from West Asian countries can schedule the Asian Cup tournament in January, while the East Asian countries can organise this tournament in June-July.

AFC has also set the capacity requirements for the AFC Asian Cup tournaments. While the quarter-finals must have to be played with at least a 20,000-capacity stadium, the minimum capacity for the semi-finals will be 40,000. The tournament opener and final matches must be played in at least a 50,000-capacity stadium.   

Key challenges for hosting the AFC Asian Cup 2023

One of the significant challenges to finding the proper hosts for the forthcoming Asian Cup tournament is the very short time to prepare major things.  

So, only those countries are likely to put the bid for the upcoming Asian Cup tournament who have already set up their key infrastructures and systems supporting the tournament. However, they can even feel tougher due to having a lack of preparation time.

Should India take a chance?

AIFF
Image Credit: Twitter

India, who has already qualified for the upcoming edition of the AFC Asian Cup, is strongly targeting hosting the AFC Asian Cup 2027 edition. Previously, during the first bidding process for the AFC Asian Cup 2023, the country initially showed their interest but ultimately withdrew.

Meanwhile, the All India Football Federation (AIFF) is currently facing a huge crisis due to administrative issues. As a result, the FIFA ban threat is looming over the country’s football. So, there are unlikely any chances for the country to think about going for the bidding fight for the AFC Asian Cup 2023.

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