1143 GMT May 28, 2022
The AFC Futsal Asian Cup will get underway in Kuwait on September 25, the Asian football governing body confirmed on Friday.
Sixteen teams will learn their pathway to the glory at the draw ceremony in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, on May 26.
The news came as a relief for the sport in Asia after the AFC earlier this week called off the AFC Futsal Club Championship for a third successive year following the UAE’s withdrawal from hosting the event in the summer.
Iranian futsal great Vahid Shamsaei, a three-time AFC Futsal Player of the Year, will be looking to steer the country to a record-extending 13th title – third in a row – at the biennial competition, which was canceled in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Shamsaei replaced ex-manager Mohammad Nazemasharieh in January following a rather disappointing World Cup campaign in Lithuania last September, which ended in a quarterfinal exit for the Asian powerhouse at the hands of Kazakhstan.
In his debut as the national team head coach, Iran made a clean sweep of victories over Maldives, Turkmenistan, and Kyrgyzstan in April to ease into the Asian Cup.
The AFC also announced that the draw for the qualifiers of the U17 Asian Cup and the U20 Asian Cup, which will take place in 2023 in Bahrain and Uzbekistan respectively, will be held in Kuala Lumpur on May 24.