FIFA and AFC postpone World Cup qualifiers

March 9, 2020 - 15:45

TEHRAN - FIFA has confirmed that the 2022 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers second round ties which were to be held in the months of March and June across Asia have been postponed due to the coronavirus outbreak.

“Following consultation with Asia’s member associations, FIFA and the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) have agreed to postpone the upcoming Asian qualifiers for the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022,” FIFA announced on Monday.

“Matches originally scheduled to take place during the international window of March 23-31 and June 1-9 are postponed to later dates. FIFA and the AFC will discuss further details of the postponed matches,” the football governing body said.

“However, in order to support the member associations concerned, and provided that the safety of all individuals involved meets the required standards and that the member associations due to play each other mutually agree, the match(es) may still be played during the international windows of March or June 2020, but always subject to prior approval from both FIFA and the AFC,” FIFA added.

“FIFA and the AFC will continue to assess the situation in relation to COVID-19 and will decide whether further changes to the schedule of Asian FIFA World Cup qualifiers are required, always with the aim of protecting the safety and health of all individuals involved,” it said.

It is expected that the 2022 World Cup and 2023 AFC Asian Cup Joint-Qualifiers that were to be played this month will now be held in October while the matches which were slated for June will be rescheduled for November 2020.

FIFA and the AFC have also agreed to postpone the AFC Futsal Championship Turkmenistan 2020, which serves as the qualifiers for the FIFA Futsal World Cup Lithuania 2020, until 5-16 August 2020.

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