Football, AFF Suzuki Cup

AFF Suzuki Cup: New format will feature 10 countries instead of 8

The AFF Suzuki Cup is bound to be a much more aggressive affair come 2018.

The ASEAN Football Confederation has announced a new structure for the 2018 AFF Suzuki Cup, and it will no longer be an eight-team tournament. The new format will include a total of ten countries in the Southeast Asian biennial tournament.

The ten countries will be divided into two groups of five teams. These two groups of five teams will play two home and two away matches.

However, no changes will be made to the semi-finals, it will still follow the home and away format.

Datuk Hamidin Mohd Amin, secretary general of FAM (Football Association of Malaysia) said FAM is ready to embrace the new format.

“We have not seen the full details of the new format yet. But the competition is certainly going to be on a longer duration with the home and away format.” he told The Star.

“It will certainly help generate more income [through gate collections] for the participating teams.”

“Previously, only two countries were allowed to host the group-stage competition. The Suzuki Cup has a good following, and I’m sure the fans will come to support our matches.”

The current AFF Suzuki Cup champions are Thailand, who won two consecutive times in 2016 and 2014.

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