Asia Cup: India’s chance to qualify for World Cup!

The 2022 Women’s Asia Cup is here. And it is hosted by India this time. 🇮🇳

Asia Cup is a quadrennial event. The 2022 edition will be 20th edition of the tournament. So here are few things you should know about the Women’s Asia Cup…

When is the tournament going to take place?

The tournament will take place between 20th January – 6th February.

Group matches: 20-27 January
Quarter-finals: 30th January
Semi-finals: 3rd February
Final: 6th February

Where will the matches take place?

The tournament will be hosted across 3 stadiums – Mumbai Football Arena (Mumbai), DY Patil Stadium (Navi Mumbai) and Shree Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex (Pune). Unfortunately Indian football fans will not be able to attend matches due to COVID-19 pandemic. All matches will be played behind closed doors.

How may teams are participating?

For the first time, Women’s Asia Cup will have 12 teams participating in it. Till last edition, only 8 teams used to participate. 12 teams are divided into 3 groups:

Group A: India (55), China (19), Chinese Taipei (39), Iran (70)

Group B: Australia (11), Thailand (38), Philippines (64), Indonesia (94)

Group C: Japan (13), South Korea (18), Vietnam (32), Myanmar (47)

Current FIFA World ranking given in brackets.

Format of the tournament:

12 teams are divided into 3 groups. Top 2 teams from each group qualify for Quarters. Two best third-placed teams will also qualify for Quarters.

Indian Squad for the tournament and their schedule:

Goalkeepers: Aditi Chauhan (1), Maibam Linthoingambi Devi, Sowmiya Narayanasamy.

Defenders: Dalima Chhibber, Sweety Devi Ngangbam, Ritu Rani, Loitongbam Ashalata Devi, Manisa Panna, Hemam Shilky Devi, Sanju Yadav.

Midfielders: Yumnam Kamala Devi, Anju Tamang, Karthika Angamuthu, Nongmeithem Ratanbala Devi, Naorem Priyangka Devi, Indumathi Kathiresan.

Forwards: Manisha Kalyan, Grace Dangmei, Pyari Xaxa, Renu, Sumati Kumari, Sandhiya Ranganathan, Mariyammal Balamurugan.

Team India’s schedule for group matches:

20 January: India vs Iran – 7.30 PM

23 January: India vs Chinese Taipei – 7.30 PM

26 January: India vs China – 3.30 PM

Road to 2023 FIFA World Cup

The 2022 Asia Cup will act as a qualifier for next year’s Women’s FIFA World Cup in Australia and New Zealand. There are 6 slots for Asia at next year’s World Cup. The number of teams participating at World Cup has also increased from 24 to 32.

Out of the 6 slots available for Asia, 1 spot has automatically gone to Australia as hosts. There are 5 spots available at Asia Cup. With 11 teams vying for 5 spots, it makes for a good chance for India to qualify for a World Cup.

There are 2 spots available for inter-continental qualification play-offs as well. 10 teams will go into inter-continental play-offs from across regions and they will play for 3 World Cup spots early next year.

So how will World Cup qualification work?

If a team reaches Semi-finals, it will automatically qualify for World Cup. The remaining spots will be decided depending on how Australia does in the tournament.

Possibility 1: Australia reaches Semis

In this scenario, other 3 semi finalists automatically qualify. For the rest 2 spots, there will be a play-off between losing quarter finalists. The losers of the play-offs will enter inter-continental qualification.

Possibility 2: Australia lost in Quarter-finals

In this scenario, 4 semi finalists automatically qualify. The 3 remaining quarter finals losers play a round-robin play-off for 1 qualification spot. Winner of the group qualifies for World Cup and the remaining 2 teams enter inter-continental qualification.

Possibility 3: Australia is eliminated in group stage (very very unlikely scenario given Australian team’s caliber)

In this scenario, losers of the quarter-finals will play a knock-out tournament between themselves with the winner going to FIFA World Cup.

The 1st target for India is to reach Quarter-finals. Then see how things progress from their.

Where to watch Asia Cup?

The tournament is LIVE on Eurosports.

Come on India! 🇮🇳

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