KUALA LUMPUR: The cast for the 2020 Asian Under-19 football Championship finals has been finalised, and it will see a record number of Southeast Asian countries in action since 2008.
Next year will see Malaysia, Indonesia, Laos, Vietnam and Cambodia representing the Asean region.
Thailand will miss out for the first time in five editions, after placing third in their group. Malaysia topped Group G followed by Cambodia and Thailand.
Set to be staged in Uzbekistan on Oct 14-31, 2020, the Asian Under-19 cast was completed by Iraq who sealed a spot in the tournament after winning Group A last Saturday.
Iraq got a 3-3 draw against Oman at the Al-Seeb Stadium and it was just enough to push them ahead of Kuwait on goal difference to join the other group winners including Qatar, Tajikistan, Iran, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Malaysia, Australia, South Korea, Japan and Indonesia.
The rankings of second-placed teams saw Laos, Vietnam, Yemen, hosts Uzbekistan and Cambodia in the top-five to progress for the finals. Saudi Arabia are the defending champions.
For the record, Malaysia have never won the Asian Under-19 Championship. Their best results are three runners-up finishes in 1959, 1960 and 1968.