Suvarna Garge

2015 SAFF Championship

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Host country  India
Champions  India (7th title)
Venue(s)  1 (in 1 host city)
Runners-up  Afghanistan
2015 SAFF Championship
Dates  23 December 2015 – 3 January 2016
Teams  7 (from 1 confederation)

The 2015 SAFF Championship (officially known as the SAFF Suzuki Cup 2015 for sponsorship reasons) was the 11th edition of the SAFF Championship, the biennial international men's football championship of South Asia organized by SAFF. It is being held in India from 23 December 2015 to 3 January 2016.

Contents

Heading into the tournament, Afghanistan were the defending champions of the tournament, with it also being the last time they can officially take part, as they have become members of the newly formed Central Asian Football Association.

Originally scheduled to take place in July 2015, monsoon season and schedule congestion led to the tournament being postponed to late December. The tournament saw no participation from Pakistan, who withdrew from the tournament in November 2015 due a dispute within the nation's football federation.

India was chosen as the host nation on 10 September 2013 with the host venue to be decided between Delhi and Kerala. In July 2015, it was announced that matches during the tournament would be held at the Trivandrum International Stadium in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala. This is the third time in which India has hosted the tournament, when it was known as the Gold Cup in 1999 and under the current name in 2011.

Participating nations

Apart from hosts India, six other South Asian nations participated in the tournament, with Pakistan being the only nation not participating. There was no reason cited by the PFF but issues with the federation's elections have forced the courts to prohibit any activities.

Venue

On 2 July 2015, it was announced that the matches during the tournament would take place at the newly constructed Greenfield Stadium in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala.

Broadcasting

The tournament was broadcast live in India and Nepal on STAR Sports 4. Lemar TV and Tolo TV broadcast it in Afghanistan. Gazi TV broadcast it in Bangladesh and Bhutan TV and MBC broadcast the tournament in Bhutan and the Maldives respectively. Every match was broadcast live on YouTube.

Group stage

All times are local, IST (UTC+5:30).

Awards

The following awards were given for the 2015 SAFF Championship.

Top scorers

4 goals
  • Khaibar Amani
  • 3 goals
  • Faysal Shayesteh
  • Jeje Lalpekhlua
  • Sunil Chhetri
  • 2 goals
    1 goal

    Controversies

    A couple of days before the tournament, it was revealed by the head coaches of the participating nations that they were upset with the lack of proper training facilities and overall lack of organization of the tournament. Committee Working President, V Sivankutty, said that the blame for the lack of organization was the responsibility of the tournament organizers.

    During the first match of the tournament, both Sri Lanka and Nepal were wearing the same dark red jersey in the first half before Nepal changed into their blue second-kit for the second half.

    Sponsorship

    On 14 September 2015 it was announced that Suzuki would be the title sponsor of the SAFF Championship for 2015.

    References

    2015 SAFF Championship Wikipedia


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