Vietnam and Singapore have been selected as the Group Stage hosts for the next edition of the AFF Suzuki Cup in 2014. The selection of the host cities was confirmed by the AFF Council during their meeting here this afternoon.
Being selected as the preliminary hosts will be a huge boost for Singapore as they defend the title they sensationally won last year. Singapore is expected to host the tournament at the new stadium which is scheduled to be ready later this year.
Beside the awards ceremony the draw to the AFF Championship 2013 took place. The tournament is held between 17-28 October in Bangkok. Maybe by then, with a year delay, we can see the Bangkok Futsal Arena opening its doors. The result of the draw looks as follow. Group A: Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, Philippines and Brunai. Group B: Australia, Indonesia, Myanmar, Timor-Leste and Laos. At the same time, the tournament is deemed to be a qualification to the AFC Futsal Championships 2014. The top four teams are qualified.
「AFF Championship 2013」とはフットサルのAFF選手権のようです。偶数年開催だったのが、AFCの予選との絡みで奇数年に変更になったようです。
At the end of the day, the congress came up with two big surprises. No. It is not the decision about the host countries for the AFF Suzuki Cup 2014, Singapore and Vietnam. Rather: the fact that there are no qualification round to be played. So for the first time since 2004, all AFF members are to enter the proper tournament. Up to now these are 11 nations. However, this could change soon. If the (soon) newest member decide to take part. And this is the second big surprise: Australia.
What provided only for a mumbling in Thailand and was worth just a marginal note in the local media created a much bigger buzz abroad (not least with a little help from us). Following a statement of Thai FA secretary general Ong-Arj Kosinkar on Wednesday; Australian FA spokesman came out on Friday and exclusively told Goal "Asean members have unanimously supported our entry into the AFF," he said "But it still has to be finalised at the meeting of the extraordinary congress in August." However, this seems just pure formality.