The Asian Football Confederation U16 Championship set for Bahrain in November is subject to postponement due to the effects of the coronavirus pandemic.
AFC had made the decision to go ahead with the holding of its competitions, including the AFC Champions League and the AFC Cup.
However, the U16 championship may be the exception and no longer hold this year. This is because participating countries requested that they be shifted to as Covid-19 situation worsens across some countries, thus making it hard to prepare for the matches.
Thus, the competition’s November 25 kick-off date may be shifted. Initially, the tournament was set for a September 16 kick-off but was shifted to November because of the pandemic.
Meanwhile, should the AFC decide to postpone the tournament, it will be shifted to 2021.
The AFC 2022 World Cup qualifiers have been postponed as well as the draws for the latter stages of the AFC Cup.
The final competition will have 16 teams in 4 groups of 4 teams with the top two teams in each group moving into the quarter-finals.
India were grouped in Group with Bahrain, Uzbekistan, and Turkmenistan in the qualifying tournament in Uzbekistan and qualified as group leaders in September 2019.
Two wins and a draw gave India 7 points in the three group stage games played, making it the ninth time the Colts made it to the AFC U16 Championships apart from the 1990, 1996, 2002, 2004, 2008, 2012, 2016, and 2018 editions of the competition.
The AFC U16 championship provides the AFC representatives for the FIFA U17 World Cup with the four teams who make it to the semifinals securing the tickets to the World Cup.
India’s first-ever FIFA U17 World Cup was in 2017 when the country hosted the event, but the last edition was in Brazil.
Written by: Daniel Ademiju