November 29 – The AFC has drawn a line under its AFC Solidarity Cup competition for emerging nations and those knocked in early rounds of Asian qualification tournaments.
The Solidarity Cup was next scheduled for 2024, having had its 2020 edition cancelled due to the global pandemic. The 10-team competition debuted in 2016, being won by Nepal.
In taking the decision to end the competition, the AFC Competitions Committee, led by Chairperson Dr. Tran Quoc Tuan for the 2023 to 2027 term, viewed that the extended qualification format for World Cup 2026 and the AFC Asian Cup Saudi Arabia 2027, meant that nations who would have likely qualified for the Solidarity Cup, were in fact already getting more competitive matches.
“Member Associations, particularly the lower ranked teams, now have more exposure and opportunities to compete in top-level matches over a longer period of time,” said an AFC statement.
“Members of the Committee agreed that the revamped qualification format dovetailed with the initial objectives of the AFC Solidarity Cup and consequently, agreed to remove the AFC Solidarity Cup from the Confederation’s portfolio of competitions effective immediately.”
Brunei team greenlighted for Singapore league
At their meeting in the UAE the AFC Competitions Committee also agreed to allow Brunei DPMM FC to participate in the 2024/2025 season of the Singapore Premier League and Singapore Cup.
Final approval for the decision is now before FIFA.
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