Women footballers to gauge progress in Olympic Qualifiers
Bangladesh, winners of the SAFF Women's Championship 2022, are all set to feature in the Women's Olympic Football tournament 2024 Asian Qualifiers this year.
Bangladesh were pitted against strong Iran, Myanmar, and Maldives in Group B in Round 1 of the tournament during a draw in Kuala Lumpur yesterday. The group matches are scheduled to be held from April 3 to 11 at a neutral venue which has not been fixed yet.
Some 26 teams, split into seven groups, will play Round 1 with the champions from each group advancing to the second round where DPR Korea, Japan, Australia, China PR, and Korea Republic will take part directly.
Four teams from Round 2 -- the three group winners and the best-ranked runners-up -- will then face off in Round 3. The top two teams from the Round 3 will eventually qualify for the Paris 2024 Women's Olympic Football Tournament.
"To be honest, we have been pitted against strong teams like Myanmar and Iran and it is tough to overcome them as we lost to Myanmar 0-5 during the Asian Qualifiers of the Tokyo Olympics in 2019 and suffered a 0-5 defeat against Iran during the Women's Asian Cup Qualifiers 2021," said Bangladesh women's team head coach Golam Rabbani Choton.
"However, I am optimistic to perform better this time as the girls are now more mature," Choton said. "We want to see the progress we have made in the last couple of years by taking part in 2024 Qualifiers."