U-17 Women's Football World Cup in India postponed due to Covid19


Sports, Football

As hosts, India were automatic qualifiers for the 16-team event. It was to be India's maiden appearance in the U-17 Women's World Cup

Chief Women's Football Officer for FIFA, Sarai Bareman (C) looks on as sports minister Kiren Rijiju (R) speaks in the presence of AIFF president Praful Patel during the unveiling of the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup India 2020 Official Emblem in Mumbai on November 2, 2019. AFP Photo

New Delhi: The FIFA Under-17 Women's World Cup to be held in India in November was on Saturday postponed by football's governing body (FIFA) due to the worsening Covid19 pandemic across the globe.

The women's age group showpiece was to be held at five venues in the country -- Kolkata, Guwahati, Bhubaneswar, Ahmedabad and Navi Mumbai -- from November 2-21.

The tournament was to be competed among 16 teams, with hosts India being automatic qualifiers. It was to be India's maiden appearance in the U-17 Women's World Cup.

The decision was taken by the FIFA-Confederations working group which was recently established by the Bureau of the FIFA Council to address the consequences of the Covid19 pandemic.

The working group recommended the Bureau of FIFA Council to "postpone the FIFA Under-20 Women's World Cup Panama / Costa Rica 2020 -- originally scheduled for August/September 2020 -- and the FIFA Under-17 Women's World Cup India 2020 -- originally scheduled for November 2020."

"New dates will be identified," FIFA said in a statement.

It was also decided "to create a sub-working group on the women's international match calendar to consider potential changes to the calendar and dates of postponed FIFA final tournaments".

While the tournament itself is five months away only the qualifying event for Asia has been held so far from which from which Japan and North Korea have made the cut.

Five remaining qualifying events -- that of Africa, Europe, Oceania, South America, and Central, North America and Caribbean -- have not been held due to the global health crisis which has affected more than a million people.