UAE host 2019 Asian Cup

The announcement was made on Monday in Bahrain after a meeting of the Asian Football Confederation’s executive committee. 

The AFC tweeted the first official confirmation: “We are pleased to announce that the United Arab Emirates will host the AFC #AC2019”.

The January 2019 tournament will be expanded from 16 teams to 24, making it the largest senior football competition to be held in the Emirates.

The six venues to be used are: Zayed Sports City and Mohammed bin Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi; Hazza bin Zayed Stadium and Khalifa International Stadium in Al Ain; and Dubai’s stadium under construction in Dubai Sports City as well as the Dubai International Cricket Ground.

The Asian Cup was last held in the UAE in 1996, when Saudi Arabia defeated the hosts in the final, via a penalty shootout.