Posted on April 20, 2017

Teams from the Lebanese, Indian, Jordanian and Nepalese communities will take part in an exciting night of community football as they play the semi-finals of the fifth Asian Communities Football Tournament (ACFT) 2017 in Al Ahli Stadium on Friday 21 April. Lebanon will take on India at 7pm, while Jordan will take on Nepal at 8:30pm.

Winners of the semi-finals will qualify for the final, which is scheduled to take place on 5 May at Al-Ahli Stadium, while losers will play the third and fourth place match on 28 April at the QFA Football Development Department pitches in Al Thumama at 7pm. The four teams qualified for the semi-finals after they won the quarter-finals, where Lebanon beat Philippines 1-0, Nepal beat Indonesia 3-1, India beat Malaysia 3-2 in penalties and Jordan beat Sri Lanka 5-1. Eight teams from the two groups qualified for their quarter-finals. Group A’s top four teams that qualified include Lebanon with a total of 12 points, India and Indonesia with 10 points, and Jordan with 9.

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Group B was led by Sri Lanka with 13 points, while Nepal came in second with 13 points. Malaysia finished third with 7 points while Philippines finished fourth with 6 points. Hundreds of fans are expected to attend the thrilling semi-finals this weekend to cheer for their community football teams as they battle it out on the field to reach the final. The tournament draw took place in February, in which 12 teams were divided into two groups of six. Group A included Indonesia, Lebanon, Jordan, India, South Korea and China, whereas Group B included Malaysia, Singapore, Nepal, Japan, Sri Lanka, and Philippines.

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The tournament follows a traditional format of twelve teams split into two groups where group stage matches were played, followed with the top four teams of each group qualifying for the knockout stage. Group A showed that it consisted of the toughest teams as three of them qualified for the semi-finals (Lebanon, India and Jordan), whereas only one team from Group B went through to the semi-finals (Nepal). Organised by the Qatar Football Association (QFA), the ACFT is sponsored by the Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy (SC) as the Strategic Partner, while Nike is also sponsoring the event.

The ACFT is a community tournament, which brings together various Asian communities residing in Qatar and aims to encourage them to stay active by engaging in physical activity through football. Organising this tournament reinforces QFA’s commitment in providing a platform to create a football culture amongst the Asian communities across Qatar while focusing on the positive values and social benefits it generates amongst these communities.