India In Group With UAE, Thailand And Bahrain For AFC Asia Cup 2019

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| May 5 , 2018 , 12:58 IST

India has been clubbed with United Arab Emirates, Thailand and Bahrain for the AFC Asia Cup 2019 tournament. The official draw for the group-stage took place on Friday.

Football team captain Sunil Chhetri, Iranian legend Ali Daei and other such iconic figures were present at the ceremony.

Speaking at the ceremony, Chhetri said: "The AFC Asian Cup is an enormous opportunity for us and we are looking forward to it. Back home in India, everyone is excited and we have the blessings of all the people and we will do our best."

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The top 24 teams from all over Asia, including hosts UAE were drawn into six groups of four teams each.

Teams in a group will play each other once and the top two from each group will qualify to the Round of 16 along with the best four third-placed teams.

The continental championship will be held across eight stadia in four cities in the UAE — Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah and Al Ain — January 5 to February 1 in 2019.

Indian team coach Stephen Constantine is confident that his team can qualify for the knockout phase of the tournament.

"I think it's a group from where we can qualify to the knockout stage. I won't say it's an easy group but we have the ability to win against some of these teams and on our day, we can beat most of them," he said.