The Southeast Asian Championship football tournament, AFF Cup 2020 will probably have to change the format if the COVID-19 epidemic in the region does not decrease. Is there a hosting ticket for the Vietnam football federation?
The situation of COVID-19 has changed many issues
Before the event of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Football Association of Southeast Asia (AFF) held a meeting to discuss plans to organize a number of tournaments in the next 4 months. Accordingly, the Southeast Asian Championship (AFF Suzuki Cup) is kept at the scheduled time from November 23 to December 31.
With the exception of Vietnam with very good control, the COVID-19 epidemic in other countries in Southeast Asia such as Singapore, Thailand, or the Philippines has been very complicated. Soccer leagues in these countries have not been able to return.
The latest announcement of the AFF Football Association said that the AFF Cup 2020 will still take place as planned at the end of the year. However, there is current information due to the translation of COVID-19, the tournament may need to change the competition format. Specifically, AFF 2020 can choose the two countries to host the group stage, then from the semi-finals, they will kick home and away. Or a nation could be the host of the group stage.
This mode will limit the teams having to move as much as normal, avoiding the influence of the COVID-19 epidemic. Meanwhile, many countries in Southeast Asia have not loosened the regulations on immigration.
Will Vietnam officially host the AFF Cup 2020?
Talking to Tien Phong News, General Secretary of Vietnam Football Federation (VFF) Le Hoai Anh said: “We have not received any official documents from AFF on this issue. This may be the proposed idea of the engineering department. Basically for the tournament to take place, from now on the preparation has to be done”.
According to Mr. Le Hoai Anh, in the case of the AFF Cup 2020 changing the competition format, Vietnam will have many chances to be selected. “Recently, the COVID-19 epidemic prevention of Vietnam has been very good, highly appreciated by the international community. Considering the current situation, if we change the tournament format to select the country that hosts the group stage, we will have many opportunities. However, we should still hope that the tournament can take place normally ”- Mr. Le Hoai Anh said.
After the national professional football tournament comes back, VFF and coach Park Hang Seo are also busy preparing plans for the Vietnam football team. Recently, the regional press said that AFC had agreed with FIFA on the plan to host the matches of the Second Round of the World Cup 2022 in Asia. In particular, the Vietnam team will meet Malaysia on October 13, Indonesia on November 12 and the UAE on November 17.