January 28th, 2019

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Asian Cup Semi-Final #1: IRAN vs JAPAN

Hello! I was snoozing this month and didn't realize that it was ASIAN CUP time again! This year it is being held in the United Arab Emirates.

ASIAN CUP SEMI-FINAL #1
IRAN vs JAPAN
Hazza Bin Zayed Stadium (Al Ain, UAE)
Monday, January 28th
18:00 Gulf Std Time (GMT+4) | 14:00 GMT | 09:00 EST | 06:00 PST

Convert to your time zone


To get a real-time play-by-play of the game, CLICK HERE and then click on the game time (game page is not currently up)

[Have some historical facts about the teams]
Have some historical facts about the teams

Islamic Republic of Iran
The treble: Iran are the only nation to have won three titles in a row, when Team Melli claimed the 1968, 1972 and 1976 championships; however, they have not returned to the final since.

Japan
Late arrivals: The Samurai Blue's first appearance in the competition was in 1988 in Qatar, where they failed to win a game. They have since won four of the past seven tournaments.


GAME PREVIEW: SEMI #1 - IRAN vs JAPAN

[Some pre-game videos/graphics - Q&A with Iran & Japan players and a LOL-tastic Photoshop of Japan]
Some pre-game videos/graphics - Q&A with Iran & Japan players and a LOL-tastic Photoshop of Japan

Japan's coach is a zombie with turkey-finger head? XD



Karim Ansarifard plays for Nottingham Forest in the Championship. Is a Crispy fan.  Is *not* the guy in the screenshot.



Maya Yoshida plays for Southampton.






[Last starting team photos from January 24th games - does IRAN still have Perfect Team Hair (TM)? You be the judge!]
Last starting team photos from January 24th games - does IRAN still have Perfect Team Hair (TM)? You be the judge!
(click for larger size)






Team Pages:  IRANJAPAN (scroll down to see *very* general individual player details)

Winner of this game goes to the FINAL on FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 1st. Loser gets $1 MILLION (US) SMACKEROONIES and no 3rd/4th place consolation game.

[Tell Them What They Win, Don Pardo! aka CASH PRIZE AMOUNTS FOR ALL PARTICIPATING TEAMS]
No idea how this compares to the prizes for something like, say, the Euros, but I saw it and thought I'd include it.




[Have some Ref Eye-candy]


CONCACAF sent some refs to the Asian Cup this year, apparently for the first time. The ref above, César Arturo Ramos, was the CONCACAF Referee of the Year in 2017, so hopefully he wasn't as tragic and didn't allow free-for-alls like the other CONCACAF head ref dude that was at the World Cup last year. (They apparently did not haze him and have him ref the Iran vs. Iraq game.)



[Supposed Worldwide Broadcasters - Couldnt Find Anything Official From the Cup Itself]
In Australia: Fox Sports 505
In Japan: TV Asahi
In South Korea: JTBC3 Fox Sports and SBS ESPN Korea
In the United Arab Emirates: beIN MAX 1 and beIN MAX 2
In Algeria: beIN MAX 2 and beIN MAX 1

AFC Asian Cup 2019 Broadcasting Rights, TV Channels Details
TERRITORY CHANNEL
Arab League beIN Sports
Asia-Pacific Fox International Channels
Australia Fox Sports, ABC
Brazil SporTV
China CCTV
Europe Eurosport
Hong Kong Now TV
India Star Sports
Indonesia Sindo TV
Iran IRIB
Japan TV Asahi, NHK BS1
Malaysia TV3
New Zealand Sky Sport
North America ONE World Sports
South Africa SABC
South Korea KBS, SBS, MBC
Thailand Channel 7
Philippines ABS-CBN Sports+Action
Uzbekistan SPORT-UZ



Link to the OFFICIAL CUP PROGRAM PDF is HERE (click Save As, if you need to save on bandwidth)

So here, have a few paltry match posts compared to 2015. Two more games left to go after this one! Tomorrow is SEMI-FINAL #2 between QATAR and UNITED ARAB EMIRATES. THE FINAL BETWEEN THE WINNERS OF THESE TWO GAMES IS FRIDAY, FRIDAY, FRIDAY!