Malé, Maldives – The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) has confirmed that the AFC Cup (South) Group D matches, which were scheduled to take place from May 14 to 21, 2021, will not be held in Malé City.
Sports Minister Ahmed Mahloof tweeted recently noting the unacceptable behaviour from Bengaluru Football Club members who were spotted on Malé roads after reassurance that these players would not leave their hotels. Minister Mahloof said that FAM has been informed that the matches cannot be held in Malé and that arrangements must be done for the departure of Benagaluru Football Club.
AFC confirmed on their website that the matched scheduled to be held in Malé were now postponed until further notice and the teams that who already arrived in Maldives must make arrangements for their departure. They also asked of the teams that have not yet arrived to cancel their travel plans.
The Maldives Ministry of Sports was heavily criticized by the public for holding the AFC group stage matches amid record Covid-19 cases in the country with special permits, while the country is implementing stricter measures in other areas.
Maldives is currently going through the third wave of Covid-19 with record number of daily cases and highest number of deaths in the past few days. AFC advises teams to adhere to HPA guidelines while travelling as well.