2008 Summer Olympics
The 2008 Summer Olympic Games known as the Games of the XXIX Olympiad and known as Beijing 2008, was an international multi-sport event, held from 8 to 24 August 2008 in Beijing, China. A total of 10,942 athletes from 204 National Olympic Committees competed in 28 sports and 302 events; this was the first time that China had hosted the Summer Olympics, but the third time that the Games had been held in East Asia, following the 1964 Olympics in Tokyo and the 1988 Olympics in Seoul, South Korea. These were the third Olympic Games staged in a socialist country, after the 1980 Summer Olympics in Moscow, Soviet Union, the 1984 Winter Olympics in Sarajevo, Yugoslavia. Beijing was awarded the 2008 Games over four competitors on 13 July 2001, having won a majority of votes from members of the International Olympic Committee after two rounds of voting; the Government of the People's Republic of China promoted the Games and invested in new facilities and transportation systems. A total of 37 venues were used to host the events, including twelve constructed for use at the Games.
The equestrian events were held in Hong Kong, making this the third Olympics for which the events were held under the jurisdiction of two different NOCs. The sailing events were contested in Qingdao, while the football events took place in several different cities; the official logo for the 2008 Games, titled "Dancing Beijing", featured a stylized calligraphic character jīng in reference to the host city. Beijing Olympics was watched by 3.5 billion people worldwide. Longest distance for an Olympic torch relay The event sets numerous world and Olympics records in the history of Sports, is the most expensive Summer Olympics of all time and second most expensive overall, after the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi; the opening ceremony was lauded by spectators and numerous international presses as spectacular and spellbinding, by many accounts "the greatest in the history of Olympics". An unprecedented 87 countries won at least one medal during the Games. China won the most gold medals, with 48, became only the seventh different team to top an overall Olympic medal tally, winning a total of 100 medals overall.
The United States placed second in the gold medal tally but won the highest number of medals overall, with a total of 112. The third place in the gold medal tally was achieved by Russia. Beijing has been selected to host the 2022 Winter Olympics. Beijing was elected as the host city for the 2008 Summer Olympics on 13 July 2001, during the 112th IOC Session in Moscow, defeating bids from Toronto, Paris and Osaka. Prior to the session, five other cities had submitted bids to the IOC, but failed to make the short list chosen by the IOC Executive Committee in 2000. After the first round of voting, Beijing held a significant lead over the other four candidates. Osaka was eliminated. In the second round, Beijing was supported by a majority of voters, eliminating the need for subsequent rounds. Toronto's bid was their 5th failure since 1960. Members of the IOC did not disclose their votes, but news reports speculated that broad international support led to China's selection from developing nations who had received assistance from China in the construction of stadiums.
The size of China, its increased enforcement of doping controls, sympathy concerning its loss of the 2000 Summer Olympics to Sydney were all factors in the decision. Eight years earlier, Beijing had led every round of voting for the 2000 Summer Olympics before losing to Sydney by two votes in the final round. Human rights concerns expressed by Amnesty International and politicians in both Europe and the United States were considered by the delegates, according to IOC Executive Director François Carrard. Carrard and others suggested. In addition, a number of IOC delegates, athletes expressed concern about heat and air quality during the Games, considering the high levels of air pollution in Beijing. China outlined plans to address these environmental concerns in its bid application; the Oxford Olympics Study 2016 estimates the outturn cost of the Beijing 2008 Summer Olympics at US$6.8 billion in 2015-dollars and cost overrun at 2% in real terms. This includes sports-related costs only, that is, operational costs incurred by the organizing committee for the purpose of staging the Games, e.g. expenditures for technology, workforce, security, catering and medical services, direct capital costs incurred by the host city and country or private investors to build the competition venues, the Olympic village, international broadcast center, media and press center, which are required to host the Games.
Indirect capital costs are not included, such as for road, rail, or airport infrastructure, or for hotel upgrades or other business investment incurred in preparation for the Games but not directly related to staging the Games. The Beijing Olympics' cost of US$6.8 billion compares with costs of US$4.6 billion for Rio 2016 and US$15 billion for London 2012. Average cost for the Summer Games since 1960 is US$5.2 billion. On 6 March 2009, the Beijing Organizing Committee for the Olympic Games reported that total spending on the games was "generally as much as that of the Athens 2004 Olympic Games", equivalen
Australia 31–0 American Samoa
On 11 April 2001, the Australian and American Samoa national association football teams played each other in a qualifying match for the 2002 FIFA World Cup. The match was played at the International Sports Stadium in Australia. Australia set a world record for the largest victory in an international football match, winning the game 31–0. Australia's Archie Thompson broke the record for most goals scored by a player in an international match by scoring 13 goals. David Zdrilic, the scorer of eight goals in the match, achieved the second highest number of goals in an international match since World War I; the outcome of the match led to debates about the format of qualification tournaments, with the Australian manager Frank Farina and Thompson feeling that preliminary rounds should be introduced to avoid such unbalanced matches, views shared by the international footballing body FIFA. It led to the introduction of a preliminary round in the Oceanian zone qualification for the 2006 FIFA World Cup.
The unbalanced level of opponents was addressed by Australia's move to the Asian Football Confederation in 2006. The first attempt from Oceanian teams to qualify for the FIFA World Cup came with the 1966 FIFA World Cup. In subsequent tournaments they entered joint qualification competitions with the Asian zone, until a separate qualification round for the Oceania Football Confederation was introduced in 1986. By the 2002 FIFA World Cup qualification tournament, this had grown to a competition with ten teams entering; the ten teams were divided into two groups of five teams, where each team played against each other once. The two group winners would advance to the final round and played against each other in a home-and-away format; the winner of Oceania would advance to the intercontinental play-off round against the fifth best team in the South American zone for a place in the World Cup. Australia and American Samoa were placed in Group 1 along with Fiji and Tonga with the matches to be played at Coffs Harbour, during April 2001.
Australia, along with New Zealand, were recognised as the strongest teams in the Oceanian zone. They were the only teams to have won the OFC Nations Cup, the only ones to have qualified for the World Cup: Australia had qualified in 1974 and New Zealand in 1982. American Samoa were one of the weakest teams in the world, having lost all of their official international matches since they had joined FIFA in 1998. Prior to the match, Australia was ranked 75th in the FIFA World Rankings, while American Samoa was ranked 203rd, the lowest of all FIFA members. Two days before the match, Australia recorded a 22–0 win over Tonga, breaking the previous record for the largest winning margin in an international match, held by Kuwait who won 20–0 against Bhutan in 2000. American Samoa had suffered two losses prior to the match, a 13–0 loss to Fiji and an 8–0 loss to Samoa. Australia fielded a team with several used players as many regulars were either rested or omitted from the team. Strikers John Aloisi and Damian Mori who combined for 10 goals in the 22–0 win over Tonga were omitted for this match.
The American Samoa team were troubled by passport issues, with only one member of their original 20-man senior team, goalkeeper Nicky Salapu, eligible to play. American Samoa were unable to call their under-20 players because most of them were involved in high school exams at the time, they were forced to draft in their youth players, including three 15-year-old players, to put together a makeshift team with an average age of 18. According to team manager and Football Federation American Samoa vice-president Tony Langkilde, some of the Samoan players had never played a full 90-minute game before the match with Australia. American Samoa held Australia scoreless for the first ten minutes of play until Con Boutsianis scored Australia's first goal from a corner kick. Archie Thompson scored his first goal in the 12th minute, his strike partner, David Zdrilic, added his first goal a minute later. Tony Popovic added two successive goals in the 17th and 19th minute to extend Australia's lead into 6–0.
In the 25th minute, Zdrilic achieved a hat-trick. Thompson scored 6 of the next 7 goals as Australia led 16–0 at half time. Thompson led Australia in scoring with 8 goals at half-time, Zdrilic had 4 goals. Boutsianis, who scored the first goal of the first half, scored the first goal of the second half in the 50th minute. Boutsianis added another goal to complete his hat-trick. Thompson and Zdrilic added 4 goals to finish with 13 and 8 goals, respectively. Boutsianis finished with 3 goals, while Popovic, Aurelio Vidmar and Simon Colosimo scored 2 goals each, substitute Fausto De Amicis scored one goal. In the 86th minute, despite being down by 29 goals, American Samoa managed to launch an attack towards Australia's goal when Pati Feagiai had a shot, saved by Michael Petkovic; that was American Samoa's only shot on goal. The large number of goals created a confusion over the correct scoreline. At the end of the match, the scoreboard at the stadium showed 32–0 and Thompson was credited with 14 goals.
After the statistician did a recount, the 31–0 scoreline was announced, Thompson's total goals count was reduced to 13. After the match, FIFA went on to release the official statistics after receiving the official report from the referee and match officials, which confirmed the 31–0 scoreline and Thompson's 13 goals. Australia's 31–0 win broke the record for the largest winning margin in an international match; the previous record was Australia's 22–0 win over Tonga, recorded two days earlier in the same competition. Both wins surpassed the previous record held by Kuwait in a 20–0 win over Bhutan in the 2000 Asian Cup qualificat
Australia national under-23 soccer team
The Australia national under-23 soccer team represents Australia in international under-23 soccer and at the Olympic Games. The team is controlled by the governing body for soccer in Australia, Football Federation Australia, a member of the Asian Football Confederation and the regional ASEAN Football Federation since leaving the Oceania Football Confederation in 2006; the team's official nickname is the Olyroos. Australia's first two appearances in the Olympic Games saw the senior men's team participate, but in 1992 the eligibility was restricted to players under the age of 23, while in 1996, it was decided to allow teams to choose three over-age players in the final Olympic squads; the team has represented Australia at the Olympic Games on five occasions, in 1992, 1996, 2000, 2004 and 2008. The team represented Australia at the AFC U-22 Championship tournament in 2014 and has qualified for the 2016 AFC U-23 Championship; the Australian national under-23 team made its international debut in 1967, when it took part in a triangular tournament against New Caledonia and New Zealand in Nouméa.
Australia lost its first game 2–1 on 6 November, won its second 1–3 on 10 November, with Gary Manuel supplying goals in both games. The team would next played eighth years in 1974, in a tour of Indonesia, sponsored by the Australian Government. During the tour, coached by Eric Worthington, won all three match against the host nation, it would be another 16 years before the team competed in international competition of any kind. In August 1990, Australia played a series of friendly matches in Europe under coach Eddie Thomson; the first against Switzerland ended in a 0–0 draw. The second match was played against the League of Ireland XI, ended in a 2–2 draw, with goals from Gary Hasler and John Gibson. Australia's final match was lost 2–0 against Czechoslovakia. Arguably Australia's most successful Olympic football tournament, the squad coached by Eddie Thomson contained just two overseas based players: KV Mechelen striker Zlatko Arambasic and Club Brugge midfielder Paul Okon, as the rest of the squad hailed from NSL clubs.
The squad saw Mark Bosnich, John Filan, Tony Vidmar and Tony Popovic, most Ned Zelic, who had single-handedly gotten the Olyroos to Barcelona with a sensational double strike in the second leg play off against the much admired Dutch team, take part before commencing their successful careers in Europe. Drawn with Mexico and Ghana, the Olyroos would take on the Africans in Zaragoza in their first round fixture. An early goal on 12 minutes, a long range free kick by Mohammed Gargo set the tone for Ghana as they held onto that lead until the 83rd minute when it was extended to 2–0 by Kwame Ayew. Ayew grabbed another on 89 minutes before Tony Vidmar scored a consolation goal for Australia on 91 minutes to bring the score to 3–1. John Filan was dropped after this game after coming under heavy criticism for failing to put up a wall for Ghana's first goal, the green Mark Bosnich was brought in, cementing his spot in the side for the Olympics. Two days in Barcelona, Zlatko Arambasic opened the scoring after 20 minutes as Australia lead Mexico 1–0 until the 63rd minute when Jorge Castañeda leveled the tie at 1–1, the game would finish this way which meant that Australia would need to win their last group stage game to proceed to the knock-out stages.
The Olyroos put in a performance worthy of note as the entire team began to fire on all cylinders, winning 3–0 against Denmark to book a spot in the quarter-finals. The game saw one first half goal by John Markovski and two second half goals thanks to Damian Mori and Tony Vidmar. Australia and Ghana progressed to the knock-out stages where Australia were tied to play against Sweden in Barcelona. In front of 30, 000 spectators at the Camp Nou, John Markovski put Australia ahead after 30 minutes. A 53rd-minute strike by Shaun Murphy put the Olyroos 2–0 up until Patrik Andersson scored one back for Sweden on 62 minutes; the game stayed at 2–1 and the result sent the Olyroos to the semi-finals where they would face Poland. At the Camp Nou in front of 45,000 spectators, Poland struck on 27 minutes, taking the lead after a goal from Wojciech Kowalczyk. Australia, hit back on 35 minutes when Adelaide City striker Carl Veart equalised. Just before half time though, Mark Viduka lashed out at a Polish defender, earning himself a straight red card, leaving the Australian's a man down against a Polish side who were technically gifted all over the park.
Poland came to life in the second period, putting on a dazzling display of soccer and scoring five goals in the process, which saw a hat-trick from Andrzej Juskowiak and an own goal from Shaun Murphy, to take out the game at 6–1. In the Bronze Medal game, Australia would meet up with group stage outfit Ghana, who took the lead when Isaac Asare scored after 19 minutes and winning the game 1–0, the result left the Olyroos to claim fourth spot at the tournament, as Spain would finish in first place after beating Poland 3–2. Eddie Thomson took a young squad to the United States, which included Aurelio Vidmar and Steve Horvat as the overaged players, the squad was combined of 7 overseas players out of the 18 men squad. A young Mark Viduka was in his second year at Dinamo Zagreb in Croatia and Kevin Muscat had just signed with English Premier League club Crystal Palace. Drawn into Group B with European heavy weights Spain and France, as well as Saudi Arabia, the Olyroos would lose 2–0 to France in their opening clash thanks to goals from Robert Pires and Florian Maurice, as Australia's Danny Tiatto saw a red card just after 24 minutes.
A 2–1 win over Saudi Arabia earnt the Olyroos their first 3 points of the campaign. Peter Tsekenis scored a
Australia national soccer team
The Australia national soccer team represents Australia in international men's soccer. Nicknamed the Socceroos, the team is controlled by the governing body for soccer in Australia, Football Federation Australia, a member of the Asian Football Confederation and the regional ASEAN Football Federation since leaving the Oceania Football Confederation in 2006. Australia is the only national team to have been a champion of two confederations, having won the OFC Nations Cup four times between 1980 and 2004, as well as the AFC Asian Cup at the 2015 event on home soil; the team has represented Australia at the FIFA World Cup tournament on five occasions, in 1974 and from 2006 to 2018. The team has represented Australia at the FIFA Confederations Cup four times; the first Australia national team was constituted in 1922 for a tour of New Zealand, which included two defeats and a draw. For the next 36 years, New Zealand and South Africa became regular opponents in tour matches. During that period, Australia competed against Canada and India during their tours of Australia in 1924 and 1938 respectively.
Australia recorded their worst defeat on 30 June 1951 as they lost 17–0 in a match to a touring England side. Australia had a rare opportunity to compete on the world's stage during the team's first major international tournament as hosts of the 1956 Melbourne Olympics. However, an inexperienced squad proved to be reason for the team's disappointing performance. With the advent of cheap air travel, Australia began to diversify its range of opponents. However, its geographical isolation continued to play a role in its destiny for the next 30 years. After failing to qualify for the FIFA World Cup in 1966 and 1970, losing in play-offs to North Korea and Israel Australia appeared at their first World Cup in West Germany, 1974. After managing only a draw from Chile and losses from East Germany and West Germany, the team, made up of amateur players was eliminated at the end of the first round, finishing last in their group without scoring a goal, it would prove to be the only appearance for the Australian team until the World Cup tournament returned to Germany more than three decades in 2006.
Over a 40-year period, the Australian team was known for its near misses in its attempts to qualify for the World Cup. The team's poor record in World Cup competition was not reflected in their reasonable performances against strong European and South American sides. In 1988, Australia defeated reigning world champions Argentina 4–1 in the Australian Bicentennial Gold Cup. In 1997, Australia drew with reigning world champions Brazil 0–0 in the group stage and defeated Uruguay 1–0 in the semi-finals to reach the 1997 FIFA Confederations Cup Final. In 2001, after a victory against reigning world champions France in the group stage, Australia finished the 2001 FIFA Confederations Cup in third place after defeating Brazil 1–0 in the third-place decider. Australia defeated England 3–1 at West Ham United's Boleyn Ground in 2003 as Wayne Rooney made his international debut. In early 2005, it was reported that Football Federation Australia had entered into discussions to join the Asian Football Confederation and end an 40-year association with the Oceania Football Confederation.
Many commentators and fans, most notably soccer broadcaster and former Australian captain Johnny Warren, felt that the only way for Australia to progress was to abandon Oceania. On 13 March, the AFC executive committee made a unanimous decision to invite Australia to join the AFC. After the OFC executive committee unanimously endorsed Australia's proposed move, FIFA approved the move on 30 June 2005. Australia joined Asia, with the move taking effect on 1 January 2006, though until Australia had to compete for a 2006 World Cup position as an OFC member country. After a successful campaign, the team took the first steps towards qualification for the 2006 World Cup. After coach Frank Farina stood down from the position after Australia's dismal performance at the 2005 Confederations Cup, Guus Hiddink was announced as the new national coach. Australia, ranked 49th, would have to play the 18th ranked Uruguay in a rematch of the 2001 qualification play-off for a spot in the 2006 World Cup. After a 5–0 friendly win against Jamaica, the first leg of the play-off tournament was lost, with the return leg still to be played in Australia four days in Sydney on 16 November 2005.
The second leg of the qualifying play-off was played in front of a crowd of 82,698 at Stadium Australia. Australia led Uruguay 1–0 after 90 minutes following a goal by Mark Bresciano in the first half; the aggregate was tied, extra time was played. Neither team scored after two periods of extra time. Australia won the penalty shootout, making Australia the first team to qualify for a World Cup via a penalty shootout. Australian goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer made two saves, with John Aloisi scoring the winning penalty for a place in the World Cup, Australia's first qualification in 32 years. Australia went into the 2006 World Cup as the second lowest-ranked side. Although their ranking vastly improved in subsequent months after a series of exhibition matches against high-profile teams, including a 1–1 draw against the Netherlands, a 1–0 win at the sold out 100,000 capacity Melbourne Cricket Ground against the European Champions Greece. For the 2006 World Cup, Australia was placed into Group F, along with Japan and defending champions Brazil.
In their opening group game, Australia defeated Japan 3–1, with Ti
2006 FIFA World Cup
The 2006 FIFA World Cup was the 18th FIFA World Cup, the quadrennial international football world championship tournament. It was held from 9 June to 9 July 2006 in Germany, which won the right to host the event in July 2000. Teams representing 198 national football associations from all six populated continents participated in the qualification process which began in September 2003. Thirty-one teams qualified from this process, along with the host nation, for the finals tournament, it was the second time that Germany staged the competition, the tenth time that it was held in Europe. Italy won the tournament, they defeated France 5–3 in a penalty shoot-out in the final, after extra time had finished in a 1–1 draw. Germany defeated Portugal 3–1 to finish in third place. Angola, Ivory Coast and Tobago, Togo made their first appearances in the finals, it was the first appearance of Serbia and Montenegro under that name. The 2006 World Cup stands as one of the most watched events in television history, garnering an estimated 26.29 billion times viewed, compiled over the course of the tournament.
The final attracted an estimated audience of 715.1 million people. The vote to choose the hosts of the 2006 tournament was held in July 2000 in Switzerland, it involved four bidding nations after Brazil had withdrawn three days earlier: Germany, South Africa and Morocco. Three rounds of voting were required, each round eliminating the nation with the fewest votes; the first two rounds were held on 6 July 2000, the final round was held on 7 July 2000, which Germany won over South Africa. Accusations of bribery and corruption had marred the success of Germany's bid from the beginning. On the day of the vote, a hoax bribery affair was made public, leading to calls for a re-vote. On the night before the vote, German satirical magazine Titanic sent letters to FIFA representatives, offering joke gifts like cuckoo clocks and Black Forest ham in exchange for their vote for Germany. Oceania delegate Charlie Dempsey, who had backed England, had been instructed to support South Africa following England's elimination.
He abstained. Had Dempsey voted as instructed, the vote would have resulted with a 12–12 tie, FIFA president Sepp Blatter, who favoured the South African bid, would have had to cast the deciding vote. More irregularities surfaced soon after, including, in the months leading up to the decision, the sudden interest of German politicians and major businesses in the four Asian countries whose delegates were decisive for the vote. Just a week before the vote, the German government under Chancellor Gerhard Schröder lifted their arms embargo on Saudi Arabia and agreed to send grenade launchers to the country. DaimlerChrysler invested several hundred million Euro in Hyundai, while one of the sons of the company's founders was a member of FIFA's executive committee. Both Volkswagen and Bayer announced investments in Thailand and South Korea, whose respective delegates Worawi Makudi and Chung Jong-Moon were possible votes for Germany. Makudi additionally received a payment by a company of German media mogul Leo Kirch, who paid millions for worthless TV rights for friendly matches of the German team and FC Bayern Munich.
On 16 October 2015, the German news magazine Der Spiegel alleged that a slush fund with money from then-Adidas CEO Robert Louis-Dreyfus was used to influence the vote of four Asian members of the FIFA executive committee. The sum of 6.7 million Euro was demanded back by Dreyfus. In order to retrieve the money, the Organizing Committee paid an equivalent sum to the FIFA as a German share for the cost of a closing ceremony, which never materialized. Wolfgang Niersbach, president of the German Football Association, denied the allegations on 17 October 2015, saying that "the World Cup was not bought" and that he could "absolutely and categorically rule out the existence of a slush fund"; the DFB announced. During a press conference on 22 October 2015, Nierbach repeated his stance, emphasizing that the 6,7 million were used in 2002 to secure a subsidy by FIFA. According to Niersbach, the payment had been agreed upon during a meeting between Franz Beckenbauer and FIFA president Blatter, with the money being provided by Dreyfus.
On the same day, FIFA contradicted Niersbach's statement, saying: "By our current state of knowledge, no such payment of 10 million Franks was registered by FIFA in 2002." The following day, former DFB president Theo Zwanziger publicly accused Niersbach of lying, saying: "It is evident that there was a slush fund for the German World Cup application". According to Zwanziger, the 6.7 million Euros went to Mohamed Bin Hammam, who at the time was supporting Blatter's campaign for president against Issa Hayatou. On 22 March 2016 it was announced that the FIFA Ethics Committee was opening proceedings into the bid. 198 teams attempted to qualify for the 2006 World Cup. Germany, the host nation, was granted automatic qualification, with the remaining 31 finals places divided among the continental confederations. Thirteen places were contested by UEFA teams, five by CAF teams, four by CONMEBOL teams, four by AFC teams, three by CONCACAF teams; the remaining two places were decided by playoffs between AFC and CONCACAF and between CONMEBOL and OFC.
Eight nations qualified for the finals for the first time: Angola, Czech Republic, Ivory Coast, Togo and Tobago, Serbia and Montenegro. Czech
2007 AFC Asian Cup
The 2007 AFC Asian Cup was the 14th edition of the men's AFC Asian Cup, a quadrennial international football tournament organised by the Asian Football Confederation. The finals were held from 7 to 29 July 2007. For the first time in its history, the competition was co-hosted by four nations: Indonesia, Malaysia and Vietnam. For the first time in the nation's history, Iraq won the continental title after it defeated Saudi Arabia 1–0 in the final; as the winner, Iraq represented the AFC in the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup. Before 2007 and every four years, Asia held its continental tournament from 1956 until China in 2004. With the Summer Olympic Games and the European Football Championship held in the same year as the Asian Cup, the AFC changed their tradition. Beginning in 2007, Asia will hold its continental tournament a year earlier, every four years henceforth from that date. An estimated worldwide television audience of 650 million people tuned in to watch the 2007 AFC Asian Cup. Australia participated for the first time since moving to the AFC from the OFC.
Australia happened to be the tournament's first nation aside from the co-hosts to qualify for the 2007 Asian Cup. The then-AFC President Mohammed Bin Hammam proposed and presented a move to have four host nations for the 2007 Asian Cup. However, he regretted this decision and called it his "mistake", citing the financial and logistic difficulties in organising an event across four countries, he said that "It is proving difficult for have to have four organising committees, four media centres and there are financial considerations." He revealed that " it ", if he had the choice. In June 2005, the AFC warned Thailand that it needed to improve its facilities before 2007, otherwise it would be dropped being replaced with Singapore. On 12 August of the same year, the AFC confirmed that Thailand would be a co-host of the 2007 Asian Cup. However, in October 2006, Thailand was again warned to improve its facilities in 90 days; the qualification round ran from 22 February 2006 to 15 November 2006. For the first time, the defending champions did not get an automatic qualification and had to play in the qualification.
Twenty-four nations were split into six four-team groups for 12 remaining spots in the finals. The four co-hosts – Indonesia, Malaysia and Vietnam – were granted automatic qualification. For the first time, the seeds are based on the October 2006 FIFA World Rankings instead of the basis of the performance from the previous AFC Asian Cup competition; this was to ensure. The four seeded teams were announced on 19 December 2006; the seeds comprised Pot 4 in the draw. Pot 1 consists of the teams from all co-hosts. On 19 December 2006, the draw was held in the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre; the Official Match Ball for the 2007 AFC Asian Cup was launched by Nike on 15 May 2007, making it the first time that a ball had been launched for any football competition in Asia. The Nike Mercurial Veloci AC features four blue stripes with gold trim with each host city's name inscribed, as well as the AFC Asian Cup logo. 16 referees and 24 assistant referees were cleared following a fitness test on 2 July in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
One referee and two assistant referees were named from the CAF. † Replaced Shamsul Maidin after the referee pulled out with injury. The AFC selected "I Believe", a 2004 single by Thai singer Tata Young as the tournament's official song; the Asian Cup saw many upsets in the early stages of the tournament. In Group A, Oman held favourites Australia to a surprising draw. Oman would have won save for an injury time goal from Tim Cahill. Next, hosts Vietnam shocked Gulf Champions UAE with a 2–0 victory. In the same group, Qatar held Japan to a shock 1–1 draw; the result caused Japan coach Ivica Osim to fly into a rage in which he branded his players as'amateurs' and reduced his interpreter to tears. In Group D, Indonesia continued the undefeated streak of the hosts by defeating Bahrain 2–1. Malaysia ended up as the only host country to drop their match, losing to China 5–1. Thailand recorded just its 2nd win in the Asian Cup finals, its first win in regulation, when they beat Oman 2–0 on 12 July. Meanwhile, Australia was upset by a 3–1 defeat against Iraq the following day, leaving them floundering in the tournament despite high expectations.
However, Australia's 4–0 demolition of Thailand at the last match day saw them into the quarterfinals. Vietnam continued to stun all predictions when drew 2006 ASIAD champion Qatar 1–1 while Japan thrashed the UAE 3–1. Though, Vietnam was crushed 1–4 by Asian champion Japan last match, but the UAE's 2–1 comeback win over Qatar witnessed Vietnam's first time to qualify into the next round, became the only host to progress through despite being in the group of three champions. On the other hand, while Malaysia continued its poor form with 0–5 and 0–2 loss to Uzbekistan and Iran, thus went out of tournament with no point, China's shocking elimination occurred when they got a hammered 0–3 defeat on the hand of the Uzbeks, despite having drawn 2–2 with Iran and was expected to qualify from group stage with an easy win. Bahrain shocked them whole tournament by defeating South Korea 2–1 in Group D, leaving the Koreans in the verge of elimination when Indonesia was beaten 1–2 by Saudi Arabia. However, South Korea progressed with a 1–0 win over host Indonesia, enough to seal them in.
In the quarterfinals, Iraq defeated Vietnam 2–0, while South Korea needed a penalty shootout to eliminate Iran 4–2. Jap
Heidelberg United FC
Heidelberg United Football Club is an association football club based in the northern Melbourne suburb of Heidelberg, Australia. The team competes in the National Premier League Victoria. Heidelberg are one of six state league teams to have eliminated an A-League team in the FFA Cup, along with Blacktown City FC, Redlands United FC, Green Gully SC, APIA Leichhardt Tigers FC and Adelaide City FC; the Heidelberg United Alexander Football Club was founded in 1958 by Greek immigrants from Florina, Macedonia. They decided to form the Clifton Hill Social Club, it was at that time when families immigrants wives and their unmarried children, began to arrive in Australia in great numbers. In May 1955 the founding members, George Baniscas, Nicholas Themelkos, Nick Romanidis, Tryphon Rakovalis, Tryphon Avramopoulos, Chris Samartzis and Peter Economidis commenced their meetings at the residence of Tryphon Rakovalis in Fairfield, their successful gathering attracted Florinians, as well as from other regions.
In 1957 discussions to establish "Alexander The Great" began. Markos Economidis managed to convince the committee of Clifton Hill Social Club to contribute the funds required to purchase the necessary gear for the team. On 12 May 1958, the Clifton Hill members organised their first appeal. A total of 125 pounds was collected. Wishing to broaden support for the soccer team and in an effort to avoid any political affiliation and, conflict, the leaders of "Alexander The Great" launched a campaign to run a independent sporting club, their move gained momentum immediately. The first committee consisting of George Baniscas, Markos Economidis, NicholasThemelkos, Tryphon Rakovalis, A. Doukas, E. Mangopoulos, G. Milopoulos, V. Iliopoulos and T. Iliopoulos and Members, they declared. During the first two years "Alexander the Great" received the financial support of the Clifton Hill Social Club, as well as of their own membership, the spectators and supporters the players; the records of the club indicate, for example, that on 1 February 1960 the players donated the amount of 5 pounds 3s 0d.
The inaugural game was played on 13 September 1958 attracting four hundred spectators and 2 pounds 2s 10d was collected, an amount which" was increased to 5 pounds 8s 3d within three months following the successful and popular start up of the club. The committee members walked around the fences to collect the entrance'tickets' in a hat, their wives were responsible for having the first-aid box ready. The main expenditure areas included the hiring of the soccer grounds, administrative expenses, players' clothing, fees for the referee 1 pound 10s 0d and drinks for the players. In 1959 the first elections took place which returned the old committee with the addition of A. Nicolaides, L. Pavlides, E. Kreskas, P Boubis, S. Sakellarides, S. Theos; the new committee increased the numbers of social activities in an effort to attract more family members to stabilise the affairs of the club and create a stronger team. The weekly social dances of the club were held at Queens Parade, Clifton Hill; the members paid two shillings and sixpence as an entrance fee, which cleared an average of 40 pounds per week.
Following the successful first two years, "Alexander the Great" applied unsuccessfully for a place in the Victorian Amateur Soccer Football Association. The club's secretary, Markos Economides, in his letters dated 9 February and 17 March 1959 to the President of the VASF H. J. Dockerty, requested "Alexander the Greats" admission to the Victoria Provisional League; the club received a negative reply in a letter signed by VASFA's Secretary-Manager, S. Beaton, claiming that the club had not played a sufficient number of games to prove its strength and financial stability. In September 1959, the committee, amidst renewed recruitment of players and membership, reapplied; this time Alexander the Great was admitted to the Provisional League, together with four other teams. By this time, the Club had managed to build a strong and skilful squad of twenty-one players unbeatable in their category in Victoria; the 1958 and 1959 team included the players A. Boutlis, J. Dafinis, Th. Doukas, D. Filippou, V. Hatzigeorgiou, V. lordanis, K. Korfiatis, A. Politis, N. Romanides, C.
Rakovalis, S. Savvides, A. Soumelides, P Themelkos, C. Zouros and C. Zygomanis. In 1960 Megas Alexandros was further strengthened with Th. Boutlis, L. Foutoulis, the brothers Evan and George Morihovitis, Th. Tangas, E. Taskas, K. Xanthopoulos and C. Zouros. During its inaugural appearance in the provisional league competition, "Alexander the Great" was declared the undisputed champions of the league winning 34 points and scoring 113 goals; the official magazine of the VASFA, Soccer News, in its 24 September 1960 edition under the title'Alexander are Real Champions' paid tribute to the club implicitly signalling remorse for the delayed admission: "of the entrants, Alexander proved themselves champions when they won the League Championship with a total of 34 points. Their attack was the best of any team competing in Victorian soccer this season, with 113 goals scored." With its successful appearance in competitive soccer, the club received an additional boost in the following years, winning all league competitions and climbing to the State League in 1964.
In 1965 Alexander's activities declined due to internal administrative problems and the team was relegated. Next year the club again won the first