The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) has decided today that the AFC Cup 2019 final between North Korea’s 4.25 SC and Al Ahed from Lebanon, scheduled to take place on November 2, 2019 in Pyongyang will now be played in Shanghai.
Due to the existing sanctions in place affecting North Korea, the AFC has been advised by its Commercial Rights Partners of the challenges in enabling among other matters, the production and broadcast delivery of the Final match, which is one of the most eagerly anticipated events in the AFC’s club calendar.
One of the key objectives in the AFC’s Vision and Mission is to foster development and promotion of football and to ensure the game is available to all in the Continent and beyond, which is also outlined in Article 2 of the AFC Statutes.
In keeping with its objectives, the AFC, after careful consideration of the challenges affecting the commercial, broadcasting, media, accessibility and logistical arrangements, is compelled to assign the Final Match to be played in a neutral venue.
Shanghai was established as the host venue due to its ease of access and after the Chinese Football Association confirmed their willingness to stage the Final Match for the AFC. Both clubs and Member Associations have been informed of the AFC’s decision. The kick-off time is set for 17.00h local time and host stadium for the final will be confirmed in due course.