KUALA LUMPUR – The national under-22 (U-22) football squad received a tough draw in the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) qualifier which was renamed the AFC U-23 Championship 2016.
Based on the draw held at the AFC House in Bukit Jalil, here, Thursday, Razip Ismail’s boys’ will face Japan, Macau and Vietnam in Group I that would be played in Malaysia.
The qualifiers will take place from March 23 to 31, 2015 at 10 different countries while the final rounds would be played in January 2016, in Qatar.
Ten group winners and five best-second placed teams from all groups (total 15 teams) will qualify for the final round.
The AFC U-23 Championship 2016 will serve as the Olympics qualifiers in every alternate edition and the top three teams from the 2016 edition will represent the Asian continent at the 2016 Olympic Games in Brazil.
Group A:Iraq, Oman, Bahrain, Lebanon, Maldives
Group B:Jordan, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Turkmenistan
Group C:Saudi Arabia, Iran, Nepal, Palestine, Afghanistan.
Group D:UAE, Yemen, Tajikistan, Sri Lanka
Group E:Syria, Uzbekistan, India Bangladesh
Group F:Australia, Myanmar, Hong Kong, Chinese Taipei
Group G:North Korea, Thailand, Cambodia, Philippines
Group H:South Korea, Indonesia, Timor-Leste, Brunei Darussalam
Group I:Japan, MALAYSIA, Vietnam, Macau
Group J:China, Laos, Singapore, Mongolia