Australia Weighing Bid to Host 2023 AFC Asian Cup

Australia is preparing to host the 2023 Asian Cup following China’s decision to relinquish its rights to the tournament, Football Australia said on Tuesday.

China was scheduled to host the tournament in June and July next year but the 24-team event has been moved as a result of the country’s commitment to a zero-COVID policy.

The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) last month invited bids for 2023, saying interested parties must confirm by June 30.

A spokesman for Football Australia said: “We are in parallel discussions with the AFC and the government to determine the process and our interests.”

The Australian government declined to comment on whether it had endorsed the bid.

“The decision to bid sits with Football Australia as the relevant national sports body,” Federal Sports Minister Anika Wells said in a statement.

South Korea confirmed on Monday that it would bid for 2023, while Japan said last month that it had been approached informally to bid.

South Korea to Bid to Host AFC Asian Cup after China Backed Out

Australia is already busy co-hosting 2023 with Women The world Cup with New Zealand, starting July 20.

Australia hosted and won the Asian Cup in January 2015, with former coach Ange Postecoglo leading the soccers to their first title in the continental showpiece.

Given the potential clash with the Women’s World Cup and the high demand for stadia from rival sports during Australia’s winter, the country’s interest may be overshadowed by the AFC’s desire to remove the tournament from the planned mid-year slot for China.

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