I-League side Chennai City FC‘s next two AFC Cup games will not be held as scheduled after the Asian Football Confederation on Wednesday postponed all matches of the continental competition until April end due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Chennai City, who qualified for this second tier club competition in Asia as I-League 2018-19 champions, were to play against TC Sports Club of Maldives on April 15 in Male in a Group E match, followed by a game against Bashundhara Kings of Bangladesh on April 29.
“Following the imposition of further preventive measures and travel restrictions by several national governments due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) has decided today to postpone all AFC Cup 2020 matches until further notice,” the AFC said in a statement.
“The AFC had earlier postponed all AFC Cup West Zone Group Stage matches on March 12, 2020 and the latest decision applies to all matches in March and April across the five AFC zones.”
Chennai City had played out a 2-2 draw with Maziya Sports and Recreation of Maldives in their first group match in Chennai on March 11.
The AFC also said it will closely monitor the situation before deciding when to recommence the 2020 AFC Cup season.
“The decision, which was also made in conjunction with the competing clubs and their respective Member Associations, is a precautionary measure to ensure the safety and wellbeing of all participating players and teams, match officials and spectators as well as designed to protect the integrity of the competition,” it said.
Another Indian club, Bengaluru FC competed in the qualifying round of the AFC Cup but lost to Maziya in the two-leg play-offs.