Qualifier now scheduled for Oct 5, venue undecided.
Citing “geopolitical tension” on the Korean Peninsula, the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) has postponed Malaysia’s Asian Cup qualifier against North Korea a second time round. The match was originally scheduled for Mar 28 and then postponed to Jun 8, with the venue being Pyongyang. Having taken safety and security into consideration, the qualifier is now set to be played on Oct 5.
In a statement, AFC said, “The AFC will closely monitor the safety and security position in coming months as well as the AFC Cup match between Kigwancha SC (DPR Korea) against Erchim FC (Mongolia) to be played May 31, 2017 as well as the AFC U-23 Championship Qualifiers – Group G to be hosted in Pyongyang, DPR Korea from July 19-23, 2017.
“After those matches, the AFC will make a decision on the venue for the AFC Asian Cup Qualifier on October 5, 2017.”
In our earlier report, Malaysia’s football chief Tunku Ismail expressed his concern that players may be deliberately poisoned in Pyongyang and said he would like the match to be played at a neutral venue for the sake of the players’ safety.