The Sydney Opera House will have a Sky Blue tinge tonight as the football world descends on the iconic Sydney venue for one of Asian football’s night of nights; the draw for the 2015 Asian Cup to be hosted in Australia.
The Sydney Opera House will have a Sky Blue tinge tonight as the football world descends on the iconic Sydney venue for one of Asian football-s night of nights; the draw for the 2015 Asian Cup to be hosted in Australia.
Sydney FC marquee man, and 2015 Asian Cup ambassador, Alessandro Del Piero headlines the list of Sky Blue figures attending the event with Asian Cup winner Ali Abbas and 2010 Asian Player of the Year and AFC Champions League winner Sasa Ognenovski also in attendance.
Former Sydney FC and Socceroo-s midfielder Brett Emerton will carry the trophy into the venue ahead of the draw.
The draw for Asia-s biggest single-sport event and the biggest football tournament ever staged in Australia will determine what route the national teams will need to take to reach the final at Sydney-s Stadium Australia on Saturday, January 31, 2015.
In terms of mouth-watering match ups in the knock-out stages, the aficionado will be looking to those nations qualified for this year-s FIFA World Cup in Brazil: Australia, Iran, Japan and Korea Republic. Jordan and Uzbekistan were the next two closest to qualifying and should pose problems for their opponents.
For the AFC Asian Cup Australia 2015 group draw, Korea Republic will be the team the top four seeds will want to avoid. The Koreans were pushed into Pot two, a result of the decision to base the seedings on current FIFA world rankings and to install hosts Australia as the first team in Pot one.
Combine the Koreans with a mercurial team like Iraq and you could be looking at a “group of death”.
Australia and Japan will look to write another chapter in their recent rivalry. The Australians came out on top in the group stage of the 2006 FIFA World Cup, thanks to Tim Cahill. The Blue Samurai turned the tables at the 2007 AFC Asian Cup, knocking the Socceroos out on penalties in the quarterfinals. Four years later they repeated the dose, this time in the final, with Tadanari Lee scoring the winner in the second period of extra time.
The opening match of the tournament will feature host nation Australia and will be played in Melbourne on Friday, January 9, 2015.
BATTLE FOR THE FINALS AWAITS - With two home games remaining, the battle for finals football is well and truly on for the Sky Blues. First to visit Allianz Stadium is the Wellington Phoenix with Sydney FC-s last minute winner in the previous encounter still fresh in the memory. A week later Perth Glory will visit in what will be a season defining game for the Sky Blues - will finals football beckon? Be at Allianz Stadium to see it all unfold.
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