The ASEAN Football Federation (AFF) announced today that the AFF Suzuki Cup 2020 will be postponed until 2021 in light of the rapidly deteriorating COVID-19 situation, regionally and globally.
According to a statement released by AFF, the health and safety of the players, coaches, partners, fans and the public are of the highest priority, and the decision to postpone the tournament to 2021 will safeguard the well-being of everyone involved in the AFF Suzuki Cup 2020. The AFF Suzuki Cup Task Force Committee held extensive discussions before reaching this decision.
“Since the onset of COVID-19, the AFF has been closely monitoring guidance from the World Health Organization (WHO), Health Ministries, government agencies, FIFA and AFC,” said AFF President Major General Khiev Sameth. “This pandemic continues to pose enormous health, societal and economic challenges to us all. AFF’s top priority continues to be the health and safety of our football family and mitigating the impact of this pandemic. With the risk of the spread of COVID-19 remaining high, the AFF finds itself in a situation where we cannot proceed safely with the AFF Suzuki Cup 2020.”
The AFF Suzuki Cup is the largest and most prestigious football tournament in South East Asia and was set to see the national ‘A’ teams of the region competing for the Championship title, played in a home and away format.
The Philippines are four-time semi-finalists in the competition having achieved the feat in 2010, 2012, 2014, and 2018. The 2020 edition was supposed to be the 10th year anniversary of the “Miracle of Hanoi”, where the Philippines defeated Vietnam, 2-0, at the My Dinh Stadium in Hanoi, Vietnam.
“The AFF Suzuki Cup will always be the tournament that re-ignited Philippine football in the national consciousness. The Miracle of Hanoi 10 years ago allowed the country to scale even greater heights in recent years,” said PFF president Mariano Araneta, Jr. “We understand the decision of the ASEAN Football Federation in postponing the tournament. We look forward to compete in the tournament next year.”