From Pakistan 1993 to India 2021: A Brief History of the SAFF Championship
The 2023 SAFF Championship, the 14th edition of the biennial international men’s football championship of South Asia, is set to kick off in Bengaluru, India from 21 June to 4 July. India, who have won the most SAFF Championships with 8 titles, are the defending champions having defeated Nepal 3-0 in the final of the 2021 edition.
However, the championship will be missing Football Sri Lanka, as they were sanctioned by FIFA on 21 January 2023, making them ineligible to participate in the competition. To increase the number of teams and make the event more competitive, Kuwait has been invited as a guest team. Similarly, one more guest team is Lebanon who will be competing in the SAFF 2023.
The first SAFF Championship was hosted by Pakistan in 1993, with India winning the tournament and going on to dominate the competition. Besides India, Bangladesh, Maldives, Afghanistan, and Sri Lanka have also won the SAFF Championship. Afghanistan left South Asia and joined Central Asia in 2015.
Football lovers are eagerly waiting for this event, as it promises to be an exciting and thrilling tournament. With India looking to defend their title, the other teams will be striving to claim the championship trophy for themselves. Stay tuned for an action-packed and unforgettable SAFF Championship 2023!
Schedule of the Tournament: Group A
|Kuwait vs Nepal||June 21||3:30pm|
|India vs Pakistan||June 21||7:30pm|
|Pakistan vs Kuwait||June 24||3:30pm|
|Nepal vs India||June 24||7:30pm|
|Nepal vs Pakistan||June 27||3:30pm|
|India vs Kuwait||June 27||7:30pm|
Schedule of the Tournament: Group B
|Lebanon vs Bangladesh||June 22||3:30pm|
|Maldives vs Bhutan||June 22||7:30pm|
|Bangladesh vs Maldives||June 25||3:30pm|
|Bhutan vs Lebanon||June 25||7:30pm|
|Lebanon vs Maldives||June 28||3:30pm|
|Bhutan vs Bangladesh||June 28||7:30pm|
All matches will be held at the Sree Kanteerava Stadium in Bengaluru, which has a rich history of hosting football matches.
The semi-finals will be played on 1 July 2023, and the final is scheduled for 4 July. Two groups will compete in the championship, with the top two teams from each group advancing to the semi-finals.
List of SAFF Championship winners and their total titles:
- India – 8 titles (1993, 1997, 1999, 2005, 2009, 2011, 2015, 2021)
- Bangladesh – 1 title (2003)
- Maldives – 2 titles (2008, 2018)
- Afghanistan – 1 title (2013)
- Sri Lanka – 1 title (1995)
Where can I find the latest news and updates on the SAFF championships, as well as live broadcasts of the matches?
For the latest news and updates on the SAFF (South Asian Football Federation) championships and live match broadcasts, please visit our website, WeFutbolFans.com. We are dedicated to providing up-to-date information on South Asian football, and our website features a section specifically for SAFF news, which you can access at WeFutbolFans.com/SouthAsia/. Be sure to visit our site to stay informed and catch all the live action of SAFF.”
Nepal, Bhutan, and Pakistan are yet to win the SAFF Championship.
It is noteworthy that despite being a competitive force in South Asian football, Nepal, Bhutan, and Pakistan are yet to win the SAFF Championship. Nepal, in particular, has been performing well in recent years but has failed to lift the trophy. Pakistan, who missed out on the 2021 edition due to suspension by FIFA, will be looking to bounce back in international football and make a mark in this tournament.
Bhutan, on the other hand, has always been considered a low-performing team in the SAFF region. However, in a recent friendly match, they showed remarkable progress and played a historic 1-1 draw against Nepal. This was the first-ever draw for Bhutan, who had always lost to the Nepali football team in the past. Therefore, they are the underdogs with high motivation to surprise everyone with their performance in the championship.
It will be interesting to see how these three teams perform in the SAFF Championship 2023. With Nepal looking to break their SAFF trophy drought and Pakistan eager to make a comeback, the competition promises to be fierce. Meanwhile, Bhutan will be hoping to build on their recent progress and make a mark in the tournament.
When and where will the 2023 SAFF Championship be held?
The 2023 SAFF Championship will be held in Bengaluru, India from 21 June to 4 July.
Which team has won the most SAFF Championships?
India has won the most SAFF Championships with 8 titles.
Who are the defending champions of the SAFF Championship?
India are the defending champions, having won the previous edition in 2021 by defeating Nepal 3-0 in the final.
Why is Sri Lanka not participating in the 2023 SAFF Championship?
Sri Lanka has been suspended by FIFA, making them ineligible to participate in the competition.
Which two teams are invited as guest teams for the 2023 SAFF Championship?
Kuwait and Lebanon have been invited as a guest teams for the 2023 SAFF Championship to increase the number of teams and make the event more competitive.
Which stadium will host all the matches of the 2023 SAFF Championship?
The Sree Kanteerava Stadium in Bengaluru will host all the matches of the 2023 SAFF Championship.
Which country hosted the first SAFF Championship, and who won the tournament?
Pakistan hosted the first SAFF Championship in 1993, and India won the tournament.
Which three teams are yet to win the SAFF Championship?
Nepal, Bhutan, and Pakistan are the three teams that are yet to win the SAFF Championship.
Which team is considered an underdog in the 2023 SAFF Championship, and why?
Bhutan is considered an underdog in the 2023 SAFF Championship because they have always been considered a low-performing team in the SAFF region. However, in a recent friendly match, they showed remarkable progress and played a historic 1-1 draw against Nepal, which has increased their motivation to surprise everyone with their performance in the championship.