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#41 [url]

Jan 17 15 8:55 PM

The tournament is still young... draws will certainly come later.

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#44 [url]

Jan 20 15 10:28 AM

A tragic news: last week 13 Iraqi kids were killed by the ISIS militiamen for watching the Asia Cup match between Iraq and Jordan.

I hope Iraq will win the Cup, in these butchers' faces.

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#45 [url]

Jan 23 15 1:29 PM

It would be great for them to have something to celebrate in these times. Sometimes such tragic events can help to galvanise a team and they perform better.

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#46 [url]

Jan 23 15 5:35 PM

Like Iraq '07...

Would be a good story for any of the last 4 to win the tournament, Iraq obviously for the reasons above, an Australia win on home soil would give the sport a real shot in the arm in the country (not to mention a decent last hurrah for Tim Cahill), the UAE have been impressive throughout and would be a good outsider victory, and South Korea... first win in 55 years? So maybe not quite all 4...

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#47 [url]

Jan 24 15 9:49 AM

This can be a good subject for an eventual new topic: "Football successes coinciding with difficult periods of a country".
The Iraqi triumph in 2007 can be an example, also Palestine's success at the 2014 AFC Challenge Cup or Libya's win at the 2014 CHAN, without forgetting Argentina's world title in 1978.

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#48 [url]

Jan 28 15 10:21 AM

I'm a bit disappointed with the Asian Cup. There have been some good games, but there has been so much atrocious defending and goalkeeping. The UAE played a nice style but ultimately folded in the obvious way. Uzbekistan played some neat stuff too. The other "good" teams were pretty dull functional outfits.

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#49 [url]

Jan 31 15 7:54 PM

Australia becomes the fourth country to conquer the continental title in two different continents.

Mexico won 2 NAFC titles and 9 CONCACAF titles;
Haiti won 1 CCCF title and 1 CONCACAF title;
Costa Rica won 7 CCCF titles and 3 CONCACAF titles;
now Australia, with 1 Asian title and 4 Oceanian titles.

Mexico were also very close to win the continental title in three different Confederations, but were runners-up at Copa América in 1993 and in 2001.

I'm pleased that the two goalscorers (Massimo Luongo and James Troisi) are two "Italian" guys.
Italian emigrants have always been decisive in the development of soccer not only in Australia, but also in Canada and in the USA. If you take a look at the CONCACAF and OFC winning squads, you find dozens of Italian family names.

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#50 [url]

Jan 31 15 9:22 PM

How did Australia win the "Fair Play" award?!

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#51 [url]

Jan 31 15 9:36 PM

Luca wrote:

Mexico won 2 NAFC titles and 9 CONCACAF titles;
Haiti won 1 CCCF title and 1 CONCACAF title;
Costa Rica won 7 CCCF titles and 3 CONCACAF titles;

Weren't de NAFC and CCCF areas not the same as in ConCaCaf?

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#52 [url]

Jan 31 15 10:45 PM

Same geographical areas (or parts of it), but I'd consider them more as predecessors to CONCACAF in this context rather than fully-separate confederations, therefore Australia = Record Breakers by those calculations.

On a similar note, there have been rumours this week (later denied) that some nations want to vote Australia out of the AFC, claiming they haven't done much for development since they joined, and have just come in and taken up one of the World Cup spots (and apparently now, the continental title). Unlikely to happen, but if they were kicked out, where would they go? UEFA? Could be the first to 3 on Luca's stat...

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#53 [url]

Jan 31 15 11:10 PM

It depends what you consider a continent.
CONCACAF = CCCF + NAFC (as of membership in 1961), and then gained new members from those which hadn't previously joined CCCF.

Also, considering that the confederation tournament for "South America" includes Mexico, USA, and has even included Japan, while CONCACAF have invited Brazil and other non-North/Central/Caribbean teams to theirs, likewise AFC has included Australia, and UEFA has included Israel, Kazakhstan and other non-European countries, I propose that CAF should get a prize for being the most geographically righteous confederation.

Australia could become a confederation on its own, while the OFC is disbanded and all members absorbed by AFC.

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#54 [url]

Feb 1 15 9:56 AM

Colombia and Brazil were also close to get the "double": Cafeteros won Copa América in 2001 but were runners-up at the 2000 Gold Cup, while Seleção was silver medal at the 1996 and 2003 Gold Cup.
Israel won the Asia Cup in 1964, but I fear they don't have many chances to win the European Championship in the next decades...

Coming back to the Aussies, Marco Bresciano and Tim Cahill are the only players to have won both the Asia Cup and the OFC Nations Cup!!

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#55 [url]

Feb 1 15 1:03 PM

nfm24 wrote:
I propose that CAF should get a prize for being the most geographically righteous confederation.

We can overlook the fact that part of Egypt is in Asia, or we can just give the prize to Antarctica.

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#56 [url]

Feb 3 15 8:34 PM

Not forgetting whether or not Morocco decide to make a serious statement on their relationship with CAF over the next few years...

On the Asian Cup again, why did the AFC give miniature versions of their trophy for each winning player? I have a couple from youth football but surely even there a medal seems more traditional and preferable, or at least more functional in the celebration process...

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#58 [url]

Feb 4 15 8:13 AM

sowe hadtwo drawsin the quarterfinals,nonein the group stage
in Africa teams are more ofthe samelevel,in Asia differences arebig and nothingseemsto chnage in the last 20 years

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#59 [url]

Feb 4 15 7:50 PM

Last 20 years (01.01.1995 – 31.12.2014)

Comparison continental finals

matches draws share
Africa 314 83 26.4%
UEFA 155 38 24.5%
Copa América 182 43 23.6%
CONCACAF Gold Cup 213 38 17.8%
but AFC 148 40 27.0%

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#60 [url]

Feb 4 15 7:52 PM

Certainly things change: for a start, the presence of Australia.
Compare the 1996 tournament - only three groups, and regional qualifying, which guaranteed several weak teams in the finals.
Now there is the AFC Challenge Cup route.

20 years ago Japan could hardly get a win against even mediocre non-Asian teams, now they are (on a good day) a genuine power.

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