AFC Asian Cup 2023: How can Indian Football team qualify for the next round?

Discover how India can qualify for the next round of the AFC Asian Cup 2023 despite facing two defeats against Australia and Uzbekistan.

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Koushik Biswas
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AFC Asian Cup 2023: How can Indian Football team qualify for the next round?

Here is how the India Football team can qualify for the knockouts of AFC Asian Cup 2023. Image | AIFF

Indian Football team had to suffer their second defeat in the AFC Asian Cup 2023 against Uzbekistan in Qatar. After getting heartbroken by Australia in the first match of Group B, India were outplayed by a better-ranked Uzbekistan by 0-3 on Thursday. However, even after two back-to-back defeats, the Indian Football team can qualify for the next round of the AFC Asian Cup 2023 and we will tell you how.

Uzbekistan players celebrating their goal against India in the AFC Asian Cup 2023 in Qatar.
Uzbekistan players celebrating their goal against India in the AFC Asian Cup 2023 in Qatar.

Three goals in the first half of the India vs Uzbekistan match from Abbosbek Fayzullayev, Igor Sergeyev and Sherzod Nasrullayev were good enough to push India to the bottom of Group B with zero points in two games. Meanwhile, Uzbekistan with four points now have bettered their chances of qualifying for the next round. Not only that, if they can beat Australia in their last game, they will qualify as the group-topper from Group B.

Also Read: India vs Uzbekistan AFC Asian Cup 2024 Highlights | Another disappointment for the Blue Tigers as they suffer a 3-0 loss against the dominant Uzbekistan

How can the Indian Football team qualify for the next round of AFC Asian Cup 2023?

Here is how the India Football team can qualify for the knockouts of AFC Asian Cup 2023.  Image | AIFF
Here is how the India Football team can qualify for the knockouts of AFC Asian Cup 2023. Image | AIFF

Although the Blue Tigers' chance to qualify for the next round of the AFC Asian Cup is very low, there is a light at the end of the tunnel for them.

In Group B of the AFC Asian Cup 2023 Tournament, Australia are the only team that have won all of their games. Uzbekistan won one and drew one against Syria, while Syria lost one game and drew one. On the other hand, India have lost all of their games in the tournament so far.

So, how can an Indian football team qualify for the next round despite losing all of their games so far? The answer lies in the AFC Asian Cup rules

Which teams will advance to the next round from the group stage in AFC Asian Cup 2023?

Here are the teams which will advance to the next round from the group stages in the AFC Asian Cup 2023:

  1. Group Winners of 6 groups

  2. Group Runners-up of 6 groups

  3. 4 best third-placed teams from the group stage

The tournament started with four teams in six groups and in the round of 16, twelve teams will qualify from the round 1/group stage as the winners and runners-up of their respective groups. Meanwhile, the rest four places will be filled by the four best third-placed teams from the entire group stage.

So, how can India qualify for the knockout stages of the AFC Asian Cup 2023?

A frustrated Sunil Chhetri in the game against Uzbekistan in AFC Asian Cup 2023.  Image | AIFF
A frustrated Sunil Chhetri in the game against Uzbekistan in AFC Asian Cup 2023. Image | AIFF

India's fate in the ongoing AFC Asian Cup will be in their hands when they face Syria on Tuesday. The Indian team need to secure three crucial points in this match to keep their hopes alive of advancing to the knockout stage as one of the four best third-placed finishers from the group stage. So, it will be a must win game for India when they take on Syria on Tuesday.

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Indian Football Sunil Chhetri Sandesh Jhingan Gurpreet Singh Sandhu 2023 Afc Asian Cup AFC Asian Cup 2024 Anirudh Thapa