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Indian Football Team to Face Iraq in King's Cup 2023 Semi-Final Showdown
Indian Football Team to Face Iraq in King's Cup 2023 Semi-Final Showdown

Thailand: In an eagerly anticipated showdown, the Indian men's football squad is set to clash with Iraq in a high-stakes semi-final match at the prestigious King's Cup 2023 tournament, taking place on September 7th in the vibrant football hub of Thailand.

The stage was set during a riveting draw ceremony held by the Football Association of Thailand this past Wednesday, where the four-nation 49th King's Cup football tournament's fate was unveiled.

Meanwhile, Thailand is primed to face off against Lebanon in the other electrifying semi-final encounter, unfolding on the same day. Football enthusiasts can mark their calendars for the climactic final and the intense third-place play-off, both slated for September 10th. All these gripping contests will unfold at the illustrious 700th Anniversary Stadium, nestled in the heart of Chiang Mai, Thailand.

The competition's rankings reveal Iraq as the tournament's apex contender, currently seated at a commendable world ranking of 70, followed closely by India, securing the 99th spot. Lebanon occupies the 100th position, and the host nation, Thailand, holds the 113th rank on the global football stage.

Notably, India's last encounter with Iraq transpired in a friendly match back in 2010, hosted in the bustling city of Baghdad, where they faced a formidable challenge, succumbing to a 2-0 defeat.

This annual spectacle, known as the King's Cup, has been a prominent fixture on the international football calendar since its inception in 1968, hosted with great zeal by Thailand year after year. Thailand's unwavering commitment to the tournament is evident, having participated in every single edition to date.

For the Indian football team, this will mark their fourth appearance in the King's Cup on Thai soil. Their most recent stint in 2019 witnessed a heart-pounding semi-final loss to Curaçao, followed by a thrilling redemption as they clinched a 1-0 victory against the resilient hosts, Thailand, to seize the coveted bronze medal.

India's initial tryst with the King's Cup occurred in 1977, resulting in a triumphant bronze win after conquering the Republic of Korea, Singapore, and Indonesia. However, in 1981, they faced an early exit, eliminated during the group stage.

In the previous edition of the tournament in 2022, it was Tajikistan who claimed the coveted title after an exhilarating showdown with Malaysia in the grand finale. Thailand, on the other hand, secured third place by emerging victorious in a tightly contested battle against Trinidad and Tobago, with a final score of 2-1.

As the King's Cup 2023 unfolds, here's the schedule to keep you on the edge of your seats:

King's Cup 2023 Schedule

Date: September 7, Thursday

Match: Iraq vs India

Time: 4:00 PM

Date: September 7, Thursday

Match: Thailand vs Lebanon

Time: 7:00 PM

Date: September 10, Sunday

Match: Third-place play-off

Time: 4:00 PM

Date: September 10, Sunday

Match: Final

Time: 7:00 PM

Prepare for an exhilarating clash of titans as the footballing world converges on the King's Cup 2023 in Thailand.

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