Kuala Lumpur [Malayasia], January 28 (ANI): The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) and the Local Organising Committee (LOC) for the AFC Women’s Asian Cup India 2022 on Thursday confirmed that the upcoming edition of Asia’s most prestigious women’s tournament will take place from January 20 to February 6.
The AFC Women’s Asian Cup India 2022 is primed to surpass all expectations and celebrate several new milestones for women’s football in the continent following the success of the 2018 edition in Jordan, which was widely-acclaimed as a breakthrough tournament after it was held in the West Zone for the first time.
Also, the AFC Women’s Asian Cup India 2022 will feature Asia’s top 12 teams, expanded from eight in the previous edition, comprising three groups of four, with a minimum of 25 matches played over 18 days and eight teams qualifying for the newly introduced quarter-finals.
Adding to the intensity, the tournament will also serve as the qualifiers for the historic cross Confederation FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023 to be co-hosted by Australia and New Zealand, which will see a record five Asian teams seal their spots to join host Australia during the AFC Women’s Asian Cup India 2022 for the newly-expanded 32-team global showpiece.
AFC General Secretary Dato’ Windsor John, in a statement, said: “Women’s football in Asia is world class and with the next FIFA Women’s World Cup to be staged in Australia and New Zealand, there has never been a more exciting time for women’s football in the Continent.
“India has seen incredible growth in recent years, in both the men’s and women’s game and we are confident that the AFC Women’s Asian Cup India 2022 will present another historic step in the incredible journey of Indian football – one that will strengthen the passion for the game and leave a lasting impact for future generations of women footballers and passionate fans. Today’s announcement highlights the great steps that are being made in terms of development, planning and execution by the Local Organising Committee and we are confident that Asian and global football will witness a truly unforgettable spectacle.”
Meanwhile, the All India Football Federation (AIFF) President Praful Patel said: “The AFC Women’s Asian Cup will not only kick-start 2022 but will be a momentous year for women’s football in India with two big events. We have seen the incremental growth and rise in popularity of women’s football with the hosting of international tournaments, and 2022 will be an important step in this journey.
“With the tournament expanded to 12 teams for this edition, fans will have the chance to see the best women footballers from around the Continent in India. Our preparations as hosts are on track, and we’re confident of delivering a world-class tournament for teams and fans.”
The AFC Women’s Asian Cup India 2022 Qualifiers is set to take place from September 13 to 25, 2021 in a centralised venue as the Continent’s hopefuls compete for the final eight spots to join the three highest-ranked sides from the last AFC Women’s Asian Cup – Japan, Australia and China PR – who alongside host India receive automatic qualification into the 2022 Finals. (ANI)
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