China to host 2023 Asia Cup

Qatar's coach Felix Sanchez gestures while wearing the gold medal following their win during the 2019 AFC Asian Cup final football match between Japan and Qatar at the Zayed Sports City Stadium. (AFP Photo)

South Korea has abandoned its bid to stage football's Asian Cup in 2023, authorities said, leaving the sole other bidders China with a free run to become hosts.

The Korea Football Association (KFA) said in a statement it had pulled out to "strategically focus" on a joint bid with North Korea to host the Women's World Cup in the same year.

The KFA announced the joint bid in March, but diplomatic contacts between Pyongyang and Seoul have since dwindled with North Korea-US nuclear talks deadlocked.

"For the Women's World Cup, FIFA and the South Korean government will provide active support so that the joint hosting by South and North Koreas can be materialised," the KFA's head Chun Han-jin said in the statement late Wednesday.

Seoul's Asian Cup withdrawal means that China should on June 4 be confirmed by the AFC (Asian Football Confederation) as hosts of the national championship finals for the second time.

China staged the tournament in 2004 when the hosts lost 3-1 to Japan in the Beijing final. The KFA announced Seoul's bid to host the 24-nation 2023 edition two years ago, saying it hoped to "host the most prestigious football tournament in Asia" 63 years after holding it for the first time in 1960.

Thailand and Indonesia had also previously expressed interest in hosting the 2023 event but dropped their bids earlier.

This year's tournament in the UAE was expanded to 24 nations for the first time with Qatar winning the final 3-1 against Japan.

Narendra Modi or Rahul Gandhi? Who will win the battle royale of the Lok Sabha Elections 2019


Get real-time news updates, views and analysis on Lok Sabha Elections 2019 on Deccanherald.com/news/lok-sabha-elections-2019 


Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter and Instagram with #DHPoliticalTheatre for live updates on the Indian general elections 2019.

Comments (+)