A total of 24 teams will contest the qualifiers to grab the remaining 11 spots.
After three years of riveting drama and excitement, the race to the upcoming edition of the AFC Asian Cup 2023 will reach its decisive stage on Wednesday, June 8, 2022, as Asia’s 24 remaining contenders begin their quest in the final round qualifiers to secure the final 11 spots at the Continent’s pinnacle national team stage.
Raising the stakes, the AFC Asian Cup 2022 Qualifiers Final Round will see fierce battles and old rivalries restored across six centralised venues – Kuwait (Group A), Mongolia (Group B), Uzbekistan (Group C), India (Group D), Malaysia (Group E) and Kyrgyz Republic (Group F) where Asia’s hopefuls will battle across three Matchdays on June 8, 11 and 14.
Kuwait, the only former champions in the AFC Asian Cup 2022 Qualifiers Final Round, will open their Group A campaign against Indonesia at the Jaber Al-Ahmad International Stadium in Kuwait City at 7:15 pm (GMT +3) before Jordan take on Nepal at the same venue three hours later.
Meanwhile in Group B, the MFF Stadium in Ulaanbaatar will set the stage for the battle of the 2019 debutants as Philippines prepare to challenge Yemen at 12:30 pm (GMT +8) before the attention shifts to home side Mongolia, who will be eyeing a strong start in their attempt to secure their maiden place at the AFC Asian Cup™ when they face Palestine at 5 pm.
Thailand will kick off the Group C action against the Maldives at the Markaziy Stadium in Namangan at 5 pm (GMT +5) while Uzbekistan, who have qualified for every edition of the AFC Asian Cup™ since 1996, will be looking for a winning start when they host Sri Lanka at 8:30 pm.
The Kolkata-based Group D will see Hong Kong open their campaign against Afghanistan at 5 pm (GMT +5:30) at the Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan Stadium before Igor Stimac’s India host Cambodia at the same venue at 8:30 pm.
Bahrain and Bangladesh will face off in their Group E opener at the National Stadium Bukit Jalil in Kuala Lumpur at 5:15 pm (GMT +8) before Malaysia, who will be hoping to make the most of their home ground advantage under new head coach Kim Pan-gon, take on Turkmenistan at 9 pm.
Finally, in the Bishkek-based Group F, Tajikistan will battle Myanmar at the Dolen Omurzakov Stadium at 4:30 pm (GMT +6) while hosts Kyrgyz Republic and Singapore set their sights on the crucial opening three points at 8 pm.
The six group winners and five best second-placed teams will join 2015 winners Australia, China PR, Islamic Republic of Iran, Iraq, four-time champions Japan, Korea Republic, Lebanon, Oman, defending champions Qatar, three-time title holders Saudi Arabia, Syria and 2019 hosts United Arab Emirates as well as Vietnam in the Finals.