AFC U16 Championship: India placed in Group C alongside Australia, South Korea and Uzbekistan

India has been pitted with Australia, South Korea and Uzbekistan in Group C of 2020 AFC U-16 Championships after the official draw held at Kuala Lumpur today

India has been pitted with Australia, South Korea and Uzbekistan in Group C of 2020 AFC U-16 Championships after the official draw held at Kuala Lumpur today.

A tough spot for India awaits in AFC U-16 Championship as they are grouped alongside 2-time champions South Korea (1988, 2002), 1-time champions Uzbekistan (2012) and 3 time semi-finalists Australia. India’s best finish in the U16 tournament has been the two quarterfinal finishes, one of which came in the last edition.

India had earlier qualified for the U-16 Finals when they finished as Group B champions during the qualifiers in Tashkent, Uzbekistan. The group had Uzbekistan (hosts), Bahrain and Turkmenistan with the Indian colts finishing on top with 7 points from three matches scoring 11 goals, while conceding just 1.

This is India’s 3rd consecutive qualification in the AFC U-16 finals, and ninth overall. In the last edition, India U-16 boys were just a win away from a direct qualification into the FIFA U-17 World Cup. A loss to Korea Republic by a solitary goal in the quarterfinals quashed the dreams. That was India’s second entry into the quarterfinals, the earlier being in 2002.

The Tournament is scheduled to take place in Bahrain between 16 September and 3 October 2020. A total of 16 teams will play in the tournament with the top 4 teams set to qualify for the 2021 FIFA U-17 World Cup in Peru.

This edition will also be the last to be played as an under-16 tournament, as the AFC have proposed switching the tournament from U-16 to U-17 from 2023 onwards.

Also Read: Leander D’Cunha earns promotion to FC Goa first team

For Trial related updates: Latest trials updates in Mumbai Football

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