Thailand faces Saudis, Iraq in Paris Olympic qualifiers

Thailand faces Saudis, Iraq in Paris Olympic qualifiers

Thailand U23 players pose after a win.
Thailand U23 players pose after a win.

Thailand was on Thursday drawn to meet defending champion Saudi Arabia in the AFC U23 Asian Cup 2024 which also serves as the continent's qualifying round for next year's Olympics.

The other two teams in Group C following the draw in Doha are former winners Iraq and Tajikistan.

Holder Saudi Arabia leads the cast, with former champions South Korea (2020), Uzbekistan (2018), Japan (2016) and Iraq (2013) also looking to become the first team to lift the coveted trophy for a second time.

Group A will see Qatar, Australia, Jordan and Indonesia vying to advance to the quarter-finals.

Japan is the top seeds in Group B, with South Korea, the United Arab Emirates and China standing in their way.

Uzbekistan leads the Group D teams, with Vietnam, Kuwait and Malaysia their challengers for the April 15 to May 3, 2024, continental showpiece.

The top three finishers will qualify for the Paris Olympics, while the fourth-placed team will participate in a play-off against an opponents from the Confederation of African Football (CAF) for a chance to compete at the 2024 Games.

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