KUALA LUMPUR: The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) are committed in supporting their affiliates to redevelop the football industry across the continent, following the impact of Covid-19 which is plaguing the world.

AFC executive committee member Datuk Hamidin Mohd Amin said the Asian body would emphasise on easing the burden of member countries in reviving the industry at youth and grassroots level.

“AFC have given their best commitment in ensuring the survival of women’s football, beach football, futsal and youth football in each of their member countries,” said Hamidin after the AFC executive committee meeting in Manama, Bahrain yesterday,

“During these two years, the football industry has been affected as various competitions faced postponements and cancellations.

“In fact, some countries have only allowed half the stadium capacity because they wanted to break the Covid-19 pandemic chain.”

Hamidin, who is also the Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) president, said the AFC would also be focusing on strengthening the youth development structure for the under-20 and under-17 categories.

They also discussed the technical development, refereeing in terms of the commercial aspects and the latest developments on the 2023 Asian Cup in China at the meeting.

The meeting, chaired by their president Shaikh Salman Ibrahim Al Khalifa, was also attended by AFC secretary-general Datuk Windsor John.

Meanwhile, Hamidin said the confederation were satisfied with Qatar’s preparations for the 2022 World Cup which was deemed to be seamless, ahead of the second edition of the prestigious tournament in Asia after South Korea and Japan in 2002.

“Qatar is ready from all angles, especially venues which are fully ready. Qatar’s preparations are commendable because everything is ready a year early,” added Hamidin.

The event will be held from Nov 21-Dec 18. — Bernama

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