SAFF Championship

The South Asian Football Federation Championship or SAFF Championship, officially called SAFF Suzuki Cup for sponsorship reasons (previously known as South Asian Association of Regional Co-operation Gold Cup and SAFF Gold Cup), is the main association football competition of the men's national football teams governed by the South Asian Football Federation. Previous names have included the South Asian Association of Regional Co-operation Gold Cup in 1993 and South Asian Gold Cup in 1995. Seven teams currently compete in the South Asian Football Federation Tournament.

SAFF Suzuki Cup
Founded1993 (1993) as SAARC Gold Cup
RegionSAFF
Number of teams
Current champions Maldives (2nd title)
Most successful team(s) India (7 titles)
Websitewww.saffsuzukicup.org
2018 SAFF Championship

History

The countries that currently compete in the tournaments are Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. It is held every two years.[1] Afghanistan joined SAFF in 2005 and left the association in 2015 to become a founding member of Central Asian Football Federation (CAFF).

The South Asian Football Federation (SAFF) Championship kicked off in Lahore in 1993, evolving out of its forerunner, the South Asian Association of Regional Co-operation (SAARC) Gold Cup. Since its inception, the biennial competition has developed into South Asia’s premier football tournament, promoting the regional development of the game. The SAFF Championship 2001 was first postponed from Oct/Nov 2001 to Jan/Feb 2002 due to the suspension of the Bangladeshi FA from FIFA; the tournament finally took place in 2003. The 2018 edition was hosted by Bangladesh.[2]

The 2020 edition of the SAFF Championship will be hosted by Bangladesh.[3][4]

Tournament summary

Year Host Final Third Place Match
Champion Score Runner-up 3rd Place Score 4th Place
1993
Details

Pakistan

India
[note]
Sri Lanka

Nepal
[note]
Pakistan
1995
Details

Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka
1–0
India

Bangladesh
[note]
Nepal
1997
Details

Nepal

India
5–1
Maldives

Pakistan
1–0
Sri Lanka
1999
Details

India

India
2–0
Bangladesh

Maldives
2–0
Nepal
2003
Details

Bangladesh

Bangladesh
1–1
(5–3 pen.)

Maldives

India
2–1
Pakistan
Year Host Final Losing semi-finalists [2]
Champion Score Runner-up
2005
Details

Pakistan

India
2–0
Bangladesh
 Maldives and  Pakistan
2008
Details

Maldives & Sri Lanka

Maldives
1–0
India
 Bhutan and  Sri Lanka
2009
Details

Bangladesh

India
0–0
(3–1 pen.)

Maldives
 Bangladesh and  Sri Lanka
2011
Details

India

India
4–0
Afghanistan
 Maldives and    Nepal
2013
Details

Nepal

Afghanistan
2–0
India
 Maldives and    Nepal
2015
Details

India

India
2–1 (a.e.t.)
Afghanistan
 Maldives and  Sri Lanka
2018
Details

Bangladesh

Maldives
2–1
India
   Nepal and  Pakistan
2020
Details

Bangladesh
1Final tournaments in league table format.
2No third place match has been played since 2005; losing semi-finalists are listed in alphabetical order.

Statistics

Performance by nation

Nation Champions Runners-up Third-place Fourth-place Semi-finalists
 India 7 (1993, 1997, 1999, 2005, 2009 [note 1], 2011, 2015) 4 (1995, 2008, 2013, 2018) 1 (2003)
 Maldives 2 (2008, 2018) 3 (1997, 2003, 2009) 1 (1999) 4 (2005, 2011, 2013, 2015)
 Bangladesh 1 (2003) 2 (1999, 2005) 1 (1995) 2 (1995, 2009)
 Afghanistan 1 (2013) 2 (2011, 2015)
 Sri Lanka 1 (1995) 1 (1993) 1 (1997) 3 (2008, 2009, 2015)
   Nepal 1 (1993) 2 (1995, 1999) 3 (2011, 2013, 2018)
 Pakistan 1 (1997) 2 (1993, 2003) 2 (2005, 2018)
 Bhutan 1 (2008)

Participating nations

Legend
  • 1st – Champions
  • 2nd – Runners-up
  • 3rd – Third place
  • 4th – Fourth place
  • SF – Semifinals[lower-alpha 1]
  • GS – Group stage
  • q – Qualified for upcoming tournament
  •      Hosts
  •  ×  – Did not enter
  •    – Did not qualify
  •  ×  – Withdrew before qualification
  •     Withdrew/Disqualified after qualification
  •     Not part of SAFF


Team
1993

1995

1997

1999

2003

2005

2008

2009

2011

2013

2015

2018

2020
Total
 Afghanistan Not part of SAFF GS GS GS GS 2nd 1st 2nd Not part of SAFF 7
 Bangladesh × SF GS 2nd 1st 2nd GS SF GS GS GS GS 11
 Bhutan Not part of SAFF GS GS SF GS GS GS GS GS 8
 India[lower-alpha 2] 1st 2nd 1st 1st 3rd 1st 2nd 1st 1st 2nd 1st 2nd 12
 Maldives × × 2nd 3rd 2nd SF 1st 2nd SF SF SF 1st 10
   Nepal 3rd SF GS 4th GS GS GS GS SF SF GS SF 12
 Pakistan 4th GS 3rd GS 4th SF GS GS GS GS × SF 12
 Sri Lanka 2nd 1st 4th GS GS GS SF SF GS GS SF GS 12
Notes
  1. The third-place match was not played in 1995 and has not been played after 2003.
  2. In 2009, India participated with their under-23 team.

All-time table

As of 2018.

Rank Team Part Pld W D L GF GA Dif Pts
1  India 1250321089234+58106
2  Maldives 10432211109144+4777
3  Bangladesh 11381510134338+555
4  Sri Lanka 1237136184660−1445
5  Pakistan 1136128163242−1044
6  Afghanistan 727124114842+640
7    Nepal 1238116214456−1239
8  Bhutan 82411221393−804


Top goalscorers


Top goalscorers by edition

Year Player(s) Goals
1993 I. M. Vijayan 3
1995 Mohamed Amanulla 3
1997 I. M. Vijayan 6
1999 Naresh Joshi 3
Bhaichung Bhutia
Mihazur Rehman
Mohamed Wildhan
2003 Sarfraz Rasool 4
2005 Ibrahim Fazeel 3
Ali Ashfaq
Ahmed Thariq
2008 Harez Habib 4
2009 Enamul Haque 4
Ahmed Thariq
E. B. Channa
2011 Sunil Chhetri 7
2013 Ali Ashfaq 10
2015 Khaibar Amani 4
2018 Manvir Singh 3

Overall top goalscorers

Players with 10 or more goals at SAFF Championships
Rank Nation Player Goals scored
1 Ali Ashfaq 20
2 Sunil Chhetri 13
3 Bhaichung Bhutia 12
4 Ibrahim Fazeel 10
Ahmed Thariq

See also

Notes

  1. The 2009 tournament was won by India national U-23 team.

References

  1. "From SAARC Gold Cup to SAFF Championship". Givemegoal.com.np. Retrieved 10 July 2014.
  2. Infos at goalnepal.com
  3. "Bangladesh to host SAFF Championship in Sept 2020". Prothom Alo. Retrieved 2019-09-18.
  4. "BD to host SAFF C'ship in Sept, 2020". The Daily Star. 17 September 2019. Retrieved 4 October 2019.
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