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The AFS has announced the award of key matches in the AFC Asian Cup 2007 finals to the host associations after a workshop for the four co-hosts. The Asian Cup 2007, AFC’s biggest ever competition and featuring the top sixteen national teams of Asia, will kick off on 7 July with Bangkok, Thailand, hosting the opening ceremony and opening match. The final on 29 July will take place in Jakarta, Indonesia.

The two semi-finals will be played in Hanoi, Vietnam and Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. These decisions were based on criteria set by AFC regarding the commitment of the associations and their governments with regard to the competition requirements.

Japan Football Association president Saburo Kawabuchi has been re-elected for another term of 2 years. The 69 years old was re-elected unopposed, as were vice-presidents Kenji Onitake, Kuniya Daini, Junji Ogura (FIFA Executive Committee member) and Kunishige Kamamoto. Meanwhile, technical director Kozo Tashima has been promoted to General Secretary and Takeshi On, a former Sanfrecce Hiroshima manager and member of the Japan national coaching staff, has been appointed as the new technical director.

Laos has been provisionally suspended by the AFC Disciplinary Committee from all AFC youth competitions for fielding an over-age player in AFC U-13 Festival of Football held in Laos in April 2005. The suspension followed the discovery and confirmation of age falsification after a Laotian player – Keophonesay Sinthalavong, born on 7 August 1990, was registered for the upcoming AFC U-17 Championship in Singapore. An investigation, however, revealed that Sinthalavong has also participated in the AFC U-13 Festival of Football in 2005, for which only players born on or after 1 January 1992 were eligible.

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