The AFC Asian Cup 2023 is set to be held in China starting June 16 to July 16, 2023, the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) announced via its website recently.

Twenty-four top Asian national teams will compete for the most coveted prize in Asian football.

For this tournament, host China is automatically qualified along with Qatar as the defending champion. 

Alongside the Chinese local organising committee (LOC), Asia’s flagship national team competition will be played across ten cities of Beijing, Chengdu, Chongqing, Dalian, Qingdao, Shanghai, Suzhou, Tianjin, Xiamen and Xi’an.

With ten cities, travelling and recovery are taken into consideration. Thus, this tournament will be held for 31 days –  the longest-held in its history, previously held by the United Arab Emirates in 2019 that staged the tournament for 28 days.

This 18th edition aims to engage more fans than ever before and will maximise the advantage of playing the opening game on a Friday and the final on a weekend.

AFC General Secretary Dato’ Windsor John said that the AFC Asian Cup continues to grow in stature and in prestige, with each edition surpassing all expectations. 

KUALA LUMPUR – APR 9, 2018: Facade of AFC House office in Bukit Jalil, KL. AFC House is Asian Football Confederation headquarters. – Image: Shutterstock

“We know that the Local Organising Committee and the Chinese Football Association will deliver a truly historic tournament in 2023. Already, we have seen the LOC make incredible progress in terms of infrastructure development despite the challenges we have seen across the world,” he said. 

He added: “We applaud them for their commitment and hard work, and we are pleased to confirm the tournament dates, which represent another important milestone in our journey and plans to engage with more fans than ever before.”

For his part, Chinese LOC General Secretary Shi Qiang said that with the confirmation of the competition dates, the LOC will be able to organise the preparatory work precisely and systematically.

“Now the preparatory work, including professional football stadium construction, competition organisation, event support, volunteers’ programme, is proceeding well as scheduled. We will work together with the AFC, to host a wonderful tournament,” he said. 

Moreover, the AFC recently launched an all-new dynamic range of logos and visual identities for its national and club competitions.

Inspired by football stadiums and the colours Asia’s national teams wear proudly, the dynamic visual arrangement for AFC national team competitions embraces the very places where Asia’s champions are crowned and fans support the continent’s best national teams and heroes.

AFC President Shaikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa shared that the organisation is delighted to start the new year with all-new AFC national team and club competition brands. 

“The AFC strives to make its competitions even more relevant for its diverse fanbase while showcasing their unique reputation as Asia’s most popular football events. I am convinced the new visual identities will resonate strongly across Asia and worldwide, and I am looking forward to the new look and feel across social media and TV broadcast,” he said. 

In collaboration with Football Marketing Asia (FMA), the new look and feel will be prominently featured across all fan-focused touch-points with the AFC competitions in the coming years, from the match venues, television broadcasts and social media channels.

This article was first published on January 9, 2021 in our Weekly E-Paper issue 123

The Bruneian |KUALA LUMPUR

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