The Asian Football Confederation issued an official statement this evening, stating: “Al Hilal Saudi Club failed to present the required list of 13 players in order to play the match in Group Two in the AFC Champions League for the West, against the UAE youth Al Ahly Dubai. 4.3 of the regulations for the AFC tournaments during the COVID-19 pandemic, and therefore he was considered withdrawing from the tournament. ”
He added: “All matches fought by Al Hilal Club (which presented a list of 11 players for the match) were considered null and not counted, according to Article 6 of the AFC Champions League instructions, and consequently, Bakhtakor of Uzbekistan and Al-Ahly Dubai qualified for the round of 16.”
He continued: “The tournament instructions allowed the registration of 35 players in each club, but Al Hilal registered 30 players, and among these 27 players traveled with the team to Doha.”
He continued: “In order to support the technical apparatus of the club affected by the cases of Covid-19, the AFC has allowed the addition of goalkeepers in order to replace the goalkeepers who tested positive for Covid-19 virus, and has worked with the local association, in order to facilitate the access of substitute goalkeepers to Besides other players who were registered in the initial list and did not travel with the team, as well as other officials, as soon as possible to Doha. ”
The statement continued: “Throughout the tournament, the AFC maintained its communication channels with the club and the Saudi Football Association, and dealt in a timely manner with all their inquiries and concerns, and despite the efforts of the AFC, Al Hilal Club and the Saudi Football Association They asked to postpone the match in front of Al-Ahly Dubai youth, based on Article 4.3 of the special instructions for AFC competitions in light of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The AFC stated: “The article says:“ If the participating team or club has fewer than 13 players (including one goalkeeper) to play the match, for any reason (whether related to Covid-19 virus or not), the team Or the participating club will not be able to compete in the match, and this team or club will be responsible for not holding the match, and therefore it will be considered withdrawn from the tournament. The participating team or club and its national association are subject to the procedures in the tournament instructions, as stipulated.
He continued, “The instructions add:” In exceptional circumstances, and in the event that the tournament schedule approved by the AFC General Secretariat is not affected, the AFC Competitions Committee (or any sub-committee entrusted with these responsibilities) can make an exception and allow Re-schedule the match in question. ”
He also explained: “But the AFC Champions League sub-committee in the West region decided that the postponement will have a significant negative impact on the current program of the AFC Champions League matches for the West region, and it was decided not to grant an exception, and the AFC medical team and local health authorities continue their commitment to safety.” And the health of all the participating clubs, and they provide health care and support to individuals whose test results were positive. ”
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