Continental futsal at its highest level embarks on its much-awaited comeback after a four-year hiatus when the 2022 AFC Futsal Asian Cup – Kuwait goes live on Tuesday, September 27, 2022.
The tournament, returning for its 17th edition after a break caused by the pandemic, is making its debut in Kuwait and will be staged for the first time in West Asia in 10 years. Asia’s top 16 sides will battle at the Saad Al Abdullah Hall led by defending champions Islamic Republic of Iran, the most successful team in the competition.
The 12-time title winners are drawn in Group C with Lebanon, Chinese Taipei, and Indonesia. Iran, who are the only Continental side to make the Semi-finals of the FIFA Futsal World Cup, will open their campaign against Indonesia at 5pm on September 28.
Hosts Kuwait, who will undoubtedly look to bank on home crowd support, will face Iraq, 16-time ASEAN champions Thailand and Oman in Group A. The hosts, making their 12th appearance, will face first-timers Oman at 8pm on Match Day 1 while two-time runners-up Thailand and Iraq commence Group A proceedings at 5pm.
Group B kicks off the tournament proper with Bahrain taking on Tajikistan at 2pm on September 27, before four-time runners-up Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan rekindle their Central Asian rivalry at 11am.
Japan, the only other team to lift the Continental trophy, will face off against Saudi Arabia in their Group D opener at 11am on September 28. The Japanese side have won the trophy thrice and finished runners-up in the 2018 edition.
Vietnam, appearing in their fifth AFC Futsal Asian Cup, will take on South Korea in the other Group D match on the same day at 2pm. While the Koreans are participating for the 14th time, they will be aiming to do better than their second-place finish in 1999.
Four daily Group Stage matches are scheduled over the first six days, with the top two sides from each group advancing to the next round before reaching its climax with its final on October 8.
The 2022 AFC Futsal Asian Cup – Kuwait looks set to provide passionate fans of the game with world-class, end-to-end action as top-flight Continental futsal returns after an absence of four years.