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Countries hailing from Asia aren’t infamous or characterized for being some of the top national sides in the entire world but nonetheless, excitement is starting to build up after the 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifiers in Asia was completed and it has resulted in a number of interesting match ups.
The draw wrapped up with the following teams and groups being created:
Group A: U.A.E., Saudi Arabia, Palestine, East Timor, Malaysia
Group B: Australia, Jordan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Bangladesh
Group C: China, Qatar, Maldives, Bhutan, Hong Kong
Group D: Iran, Oman, India, Turkmenistan, Guam
Group E: Japan, Syria, Afghanistan, Singapore, Cambodia
Group F: Iraq, Vietnam, Thailand, Indonesia, Chinese Taipei
Group G: South Korea, Kuwait, Lebanon, Myanmar, Laos
Group H: Uzbekistan, Bahrain, Philippines, North Korea, Yemen
China has become one of the favorites of qualifying into the upcoming 2018 World Cup after being pitted in what seems to be a fairly simply group which consists of: Qatar, Maldives, Bhutan and Hong Kong with almost none of those teams posing a real challenge or threat. The last time that the Chinese side managed to actually qualify and make it into the group stages of any World Cup was back in 2002 and they are hungry on returning to those spots. Read the rest of this entry »
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Australian football has made substantial progress, especially during the transitional period after the retirement of top names like Tim Cahill, and the football Federation has awarded its chief executive with an extension until the 2018 World Cup in Russia.
David Gallop was brought in as the chief executive of the Australian football Federation just under three years ago. During this period, Australia has made several progress including featuring of the recent World Cup 2014 and winning the latest edition of the Asian cup. Chairman Frank Lowy says that the work done by Gallop deserves recognition and this contract fits into that category.
Even though Australia qualified for the World Cup 2014 finals, they did not exactly cover themselves in glory after being knocked out of the group stages. Admittedly, Australia faced a difficult chance to even get into the knockout stages since they were in the same group as two former world champions. Gallop was someone new to football when he was first appointed as the chief executive of the Australian FA. Prior to this role, he was involved with the National Rugby league. Despite this, Lowy says that the way in which Gallop accustomed himself to the new environment was deserving praise in itself. Read the rest of this entry »