AFF Cup 2020 group stage draw postponed

By Hoang Nguyen   June 10, 2020 | 04:56 pm GMT+7
AFF Cup 2020 group stage draw postponed
Vietnam (in red) and Thailand are the biggest contender for the AFF Cup 2020 title. Photo by VnExpress/Lam Thoa.
The ASEAN Football Federation (AFF) decided to delay the AFF Cup 2020 group stage draw in Thailand over the Covid-19 pandemic.

The drawing ceremony was supposed to take place this month, but AFF said it wants to wait until some countries in Southeast Asia succeed in containing the pandemic. There is no new schedule for the draw at the moment, but according to AFF, it won't happen before August.

The federation, however, confirmed once again that the AFF Cup 2020 will still be played on schedule, from November 23 to December 31, just a few days after the World Cup 2022 qualifiers.

The Vietnam Football Federation (VFF) has recently said that Vietnam could end up hosting the tournament as the AFF was considering a single-nation option. If the AFF Cup opts to have the tournament played in just one country, Vietnam would be an ideal candidate, given its demonstrated success in containing the pandemic.

The AFF Cup had introduced the new format of having home and away matches for each team from the group stage to the final in the 2018 edition, when Vietnam won the title. This new format will be scrapped if the single nation format is adopted.

Thai site SMM Sport has said that Vietnam can be the savior for the AFF Cup this year if the pandemic situation does not improve in the region as a whole.

"Vietnam can be the hero of this tournament as the only host," SMM Sport wrote.

Vietnam is the only country in Southeast Asia to have brought football back and allowed spectators to attend the matches. The first game after a long break, played on May 23, attracted 10,000 fans in the stadium and made international headlines.

 
 
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