Friday, July 29, 2011

AFC Pot Allocations

After the AFC Second Round reach its conclusion today with the elimination of fifteen hopefuls, the list of twenty AFC Third Round participants was finalized, thus allowing for the release of AFC's pot allocations for the draw. Interesting notes are that Bahrain and North Korea, both given byes to the Third Round based on their performances in the previous FIFA World Cup, were not even among the teams in the top two pots. I commend the AFC for being proactive in rewarding teams for doing well in their flagship events by giving them a respite from qualifying from future events. The top three finishers from the previous AFC Asian Cup automatically qualify for the next AFC Asian Cup, and the top five Asian finishers in the previous FIFA World Cup, get to skip the first two rounds of the next qualification cycle.

There are four pots consisting of five teams each. The teams will be drawn into five groups of four, with each group consisting of one team from Pot 1, one from Pot 2, one from Pot 3, and one from Pot 4.

The Pots are broken down as follows.

Pot 1
1. Japan
2. Australia
3. South Korea
4. Iran
5. China

Pot 2
6. Uzbekistan
7. Qatar
8. Jordan
9. Saudi Arabia
10. Kuwait

Pot 3
11. Bahrain
12. Syria
13. Oman
14. Iraq
15. United Arab Emirates

Pot 4
16. North Korea
17. Thailand
18. Singapore
19. Indonesia
20. Lebanon

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