Australia is out of the 2023 Asian Cup race, wants to host the 2026 women’s tournament

Australia decided not to apply for the 2023 Asian Cup but will submit a spot for the 2026 women’s tournament, Football Australia said on Friday.

Australia, along with South Korea, Indonesia and Qatar, have expressed interest to replace China as the host of the 2023 tournament.

“Football Australia has since determined that it will not proceed with an official bid registration for the 2023 AFC Asian Cup,” the governing body said in a statement.

“Football Australia maintains a strong interest in bidding for the AFC Women’s Asian Cup 2026 and will submit a formal and comprehensive bid package to the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) within the required deadline at the end of the year. now.”

The FA did not give a reason to withdraw but chief executive James Johnson said in July an effort would depend on government support and the Asian Football Confederation (AFC)’s willingness to move the tournament to the next stage. January to February 2024.

China was to host the 24-team event in June and July next year but gave up hosting rights in May due to the country’s pursuit of a COVID-free policy.

Australia is scheduled to co-host the 2023 Women’s World Cup with New Zealand in July-August next year.

The deadline to register for the Men’s Asian Cup is August 31. South Korea confirmed this week it had submitted its bid.

When contacted by Reuters on Friday, the AFC declined to comment on whether Indonesia and Qatar would participate in the bid.

The Indonesian Football Association declined to comment on their interest in the tournament. The Qatar Football Association was not immediately available for comment.

Australia, Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Uzbekistan have expressed interest in hosting the 2026 women’s Asian Cup, the AFC said last month.

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