Vietnam to play Japan in Asian Cup opener

By Hoang Trang   November 28, 2023 | 03:58 am PT
Vietnam to play Japan in Asian Cup opener
Nguyen Cong Phuong (C) plays in a quarterfinal game between Vietnam and Japan at the 2019 Asian Cup. Photo by VnExpress/Duc Dong
Vietnam will start their 2024 Asian Cup campaign by facing Japan on Jan. 14, followed by Indonesia and Iraq in the group stage.

The opening match of group D in the Asian Cup between Vietnam and Japan will take place at Al Thumama Stadium in Doha, Qatar at 6:30 p.m Hanoi time. This is one of the stadiums used for the 2022 World Cup.

At the 2019 Asian Cup, Vietnam reached the quarterfinals, eventually losing to Japan.

In their second match on Jan. 19, Vietnam will play Indonesia at 9:30 p.m. The match between the two Southeast Asian teams takes place at Abdullah Bin Khalifa Stadium. This is considered the key match for Vietnam, as Indonesia are deemed the weakest team in the group.

The final group stage match of Vietnam is against Iraq at 6:30 p.m. on Jan. 24 at Jassim Bin Hamad Stadium. Indonesia and Iraq are also Vietnam's opponents in the second qualifying round of the 2026 World Cup. Vietnam lost to Iraq last week and will play Indonesia in March.

The 2024 Asian Cup will take place from Jan. 12 to Feb. 10 in Qatar. The tournament was scheduled to be held in the summer of 2023 in China but had to be postponed and the location was switched to Qatar.

The tournament in Qatar has 24 teams divided into six groups, competing in a round-robin format. The top two teams of each group and the four best third-placed teams will enter the round of 16.

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