The 2022 AFC Women’s Asian Cup qualification groups are set. Eight groups consisting of 28 total teams will contend for a spot in next year’s final tournament in India.
Four major teams missing from the draw have already qualified for the main tournament. Japan, Australia and China PR finished in the top three positions during the 2018 tournament, automatically qualifying themselves for the 2022 edition. Meanwhile, host country India also received automatic qualification.
The qualifying round will take place in mid-September of this year. The winner of each group will punch their ticket to the 20th edition of the quadrennial competition. It is the first time that the tournament will feature 12 teams as opposed to its usual eight.
The final tournament will take place from 20 January to 6 February 2022.
Implications beyond 2022
The AFC Women’s Asian Cup also serves as the final stage of World Cup qualification for Asian teams. Apart from achieving glory within the Asian Football Confederation, several teams will have their sights set on reaching the 2023 World Cup.
Because Australia has also already qualified for the World Cup as a co-host, there are a handful of opportunities for other teams to advance. At least five additional AFC teams will proceed to the World Cup based on their rankings in the Asian Cup.