AFC Asian Cup Draw: India hopeful to Qualify for the knockouts

The AFC Asian Cup will begin in January 2019 and India has been sorted into Group A along with Thailand, Bahrain and the hosts United Arab Emirates.

Football News: India in Group A with UAE, Bahrain and Thailand

The Indian team, with the help from their coach Stephen Constantine, topped the group in the third playoff qualification round. The group featured other teams like Kyrgyz Republic, Myanmar and Macau.

This helped India to gain an entry into the draw from Pot 3. As UAE are the hosts, they were automatically drawn into Group A, while the other teams Thailand and Bahrain were drawn from Pot 2 and 4 respectively.

The tournament will be started by UAE and Bahrain as they will face each other on January 5, 2019. India’s first match is against Thailand which will take place on January 6 at the Al Nahyan Stadium, Abu Dhabi.

India will face the hosts UAE in their second game at the Zayed Sports City, Abu Dhabi on January 10. India’s final group game will be against Bahrain at the Sharjah Stadium on January 14.

Seven years ago in the year of 2011, India had faced their old foes Bahrain on the same date, January 14, in the exact same tournament. India’s defeat by 2-5 goals saw them crash out of the group stage.

Among the teams in Group A, only the hosts UAE (81) are the team with a better FIFA Ranking than India. The other teams are ranked below with Thailand at the 122nd position and Bahrain occupying the 116th spot.