Friday 19 April 2024, 09:00

Host Cities for the FIFA Futsal World Cup Uzbekistan 2024™ announced

  • Tashkent, Bukhara and Andijan will be the three venues for the 24-team competition

  • The tournament will make history as the first FIFA event to take place in Central Asia

  • Draw to take place on 26 May

The three Host Cities for the FIFA Futsal World Cup 2024™, the first FIFA event to be staged in a Central Asian country, have been decided, with the capital, Tashkent, being joined by the ancient Silk Road trading centre of Bukhara and the city of Andijan in the Fergana Valley.

The tenth edition of the FIFA Futsal World Cup™, which will feature 24 teams, including holders Portugal and record five-time champions Brazil, will be contested from 14 September to 6 October. The draw is scheduled to be held on 26 May in Samarkand and so far there will be two debutants in the hat, namely France and New Zealand.

Fans of Uzbekistan show their support

“We are delighted with the choice of these three incredible cities, which represent the contrasting faces of Uzbekistan, and I am sure that the 24 participating teams will feel at home here and be able to perform at their best,” said FIFA Director of Tournaments Jaime Yarza.

“This will be the first-ever FIFA tournament to take place in Uzbekistan, and indeed Central Asia, which makes it very special for FIFA and supports our mission of becoming truly global.”

Shakhzodjon Nematjonov of Uzbekistan celebrates with Sherzod Esanov and teammates after scoring

Ravshan Irmatov, the Senior Vice-President of the Uzbekistan Football Association, said: “We feel very honoured to host this great event. Uzbekistan is a wonderful country that is developing at a tremendous rate, and now we can prepare to welcome the world’s best futsal players and coaches and give them a taste of this fascinating place. Given futsal’s huge popularity across the globe, we expect thousands of fans from all over the world to pack out the stands and support their teams, setting the stage for everyone to enjoy the action and creating a great atmosphere.”

The tournament, which is being hosted by an AFC member association for the fourth time, comes at an exciting juncture for football and futsal in Central Asia, where rapid development is afoot. For example, Tajikistan made their debut at the AFC Asian Cup this year, with Kyrgyz Republic taking part for the second time following their first appearance in 2019.

Khusniddin Nishonov of Uzbekistan celebrates scoring

Futsal, for its part, has grown greatly in Uzbekistan over the last decade. The national team participated in the FIFA Futsal World Cup for the first time in 2016 and reached the knockout stage in 2021, losing out 9-8 to IR Iran in the last 16 in one of the most pulsating games in the tournament’s history. The White Wolves have also finished as runners-up at the AFC Futsal Asian Cup four times and featured on the podium in its last four editions.