Tehran Times – KUALA LUMPUR, Iran have been drawn in a tough group at the 2020 AFC U23 Championship.
Farhad Majidi’s team are drawn in Group C along with defending champions Uzbekistan, China and South Korea.
The fourth edition of the Championship will be played across three cities – Bangkok, Buriram and Songkhla – with the tournament kicking off on January 8, and the final to be played on January 26.
Besides Continental glory, 15 of the 16 teams will also be competing for places in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, where the top three sides will join hosts Japan as Asia’s representatives next July.
Hosts Thailand have been drawn in Group A and they will have 2013 champions Iraq, Australia and debutants Bahrain to contend with.
Qatar, third in 2018, 2016 champions Japan, Saudi Arabia – runners-up in 2013, and Syria are in an exciting looking Group B.
Vietnam, runners-up in 2018, have DPR Korea, Jordan – third in 2013 – and United Arab Emirates for company in Group D.
Should Japan make the last four stage, the other three semi-finalists will be assured of their places in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.