Asian Cup 2019: Path to Success

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    Asian Cup 2019: Path to Success

    GROUP A
    ------------------------
    1. UNITED ARAB EMIRATES (1)
    2. THAILAND (2)
    3. INDIA
    4. BAHRAIN (3)

    GROUP B
    ------------------------
    1. AUSTRALIA (1)
    2. SYRIA (2)
    3. PALESTINE
    4. JORDAN (3)

    GROUP C
    ------------------------
    1. KOREA REPUBLIC (1)
    2. CHINA P.R. (2)
    3. PHILIPPINES
    4. KYRGYZ REPUBLIC (3)

    GROUP D
    ------------------------
    1. IRAN (1)
    2. IRAQ (2)
    3. VIETNAM (3)
    4. YEMEN

    GROUP E
    ------------------------
    1. SAUDI ARABIA (1/2)
    2. QATAR (1/2)
    3. LEBANON
    4. DPR KOREA (3)

    GROUP F
    ------------------------
    1. JAPAN (1)
    2. UZBEKISTAN (2)
    3. OMAN (3/4)
    4. TURKMENISTAN (3/4)

    GROUP STAGE:
    ============
    36 games in group stage to determine first, second and third teams in each group. 4 of the best third place teams move to next stage.

    ROUND OF 16: (Assuming no major upset)
    ==============================================
    W37 --- 1B v 3acd ---- Australia v Bahrain/Kyrgz/Vietnam
    W38 --- 2A v 2C ---- Thailand v China
    W39 --- 1D v 3bef ---- Iran v DPR Korea/Lebanon/Oman/Turkmenistan/Jordan/Palestine
    W40 --- 1F v 2E ---- Japan v Qatar/Saudi
    W41 --- 2B v 2F ---- Syria v Uzbek
    W42 --- 1A v 3cde ---- UAE v Kyrgz/Vietnam/DPR Korea
    W43 --- 1C v 3abf ---- S Korea v Bahrain/Jordan/Oman
    W44 --- 1E v 2D ---- Saudi/Qatar v Iraq

    QUARTERFINALS: (Assuming no major upset)
    ==============================================
    W45 --- W37 v W40 Australia v Japan
    W46 --- W38 v W39 China v Iran
    W47 --- W43 v W44 S Korea v Saudi/Qatar
    W48 --- W42 v W41 UAE v Uzbek

    SEMIFINAL: (Assuming no major upset)
    ==============================================
    W49 --- W46 v W45 Iran v Australia/Japan
    W50 --- W47 v W48 S Korea vs UAE

    FINAL: (Predictions)
    ==============================================
    W51 --- W49 v W50 Iran v S Korea/UAE ========>>Winner: Iran

    Analysis:
    Iran must win its group to enjoy a relatively easy path to semi-finals.
    On its way to the semis, Iran must be victorious in the round of 16 against the best third place team from groups* B, E and F which could include one of the DPR Korea, Lebanon, Oman, Turkmenistan, Jordan and Palestine. In the quarter-finals, China will pose to be the most likely opponent for Iran. In the semi finals, Iran will meet either of Australia or Japan before reaching the final which will include either of S Korea and UAE/Saudi/Qatar who are the most probable candidates to also reach the semi-finals/final stage.

    *If the final standing of Group B, E and F, be anything other than the usual suspects, then that could impact who Iran will meet in semi final, which could potentially include Saudi or Qatar or even Iraq. If Iran becomes second in its group, it would have a much more difficult route to the semis/finals, where it would need to face Qatar/Saudi in the round of 16 and potentially S Korea in quarter-finals.

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