Chances to host 2011 Asian Cup fading - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Chances to host 2011 Asian Cup fading

By Julian Linden 13/02/2007 08:17:31 PM Comments (0)

Australia's hopes of staging the 2011 Asian Cup are fading with officials opting not to submit a formal bid by Thursday's deadline after an Asian Football Confederation (AFC) proposal effectively ended their chances.

Australia still wants to host the region's biggest football tournament but under the AFC's new proposed rotation policy, the 2011 edition must go to a country from West Asia or Central and South Asia.

The earliest Australia could realistically hope to stage the tournament is 2015, when it is scheduled to be held in either East Asia or Asean, of which Australia is now a part.

Although the deadline for countries to submit their initial bids for 2011 expires this week, the proposed rotation policy will not be ratified until the AFC Congress in May.

Football Federation of Australia (FFA) officials told Reuters that Australia would consider lodging a late bid but only if the proposed rotation rules allowed an Asean country to host the 2011 championship.

"We'd love to host the Asian Cup. It's very much on our radar and we're continuing to discuss it informally with the AFC," the FFA's head of marketing, communication and strategy Geoff Parmenter said.

"(But) If the allocation process for 2011 is rigid and we can't bid then we'd certainly be interested in 2015."

Australia wants to host the Asian Cup as soon as possible to strengthen their case to stage the World Cup in either 2018 or 2022 but are wary about trying to jump the queue in Asia.

Australia only joined the AFC in 2006 after ditching Oceania in search of tougher competition and an easier qualifying route to the World Cup but their move has drawn a mixed response.

While FIFA boss Sepp Blatter said Australia's shift into Asia would benefit the whole region, not everyone agrees, with the head of Kuwait's Olympic Committee, Sheikh Talah al Fahd al Sabah, calling for Australia to be kicked out of Asia.

Australia qualified ahead of Kuwait for this year's Asian Cup, to be co-hosted by Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam in July, and are among the early favourites to win the tournament.

Brought to you by AAP AAP © 2022 AAP

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