Viet Nam News
HÀ NỘI — The Toyota Mekong Club Championship football tournament will be held from November 5 to January 8 next year in each of the five Mekong countries, with the augural scheduled in Laos on November 5.
Winners of local leagues in Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand and Việt Nam will represent their respective countries and vie for the championship title.
The five clubs that will play at the event are Boeung Ket Angkor FC (Cambodia), Lanexang United FC (Laos), Yadanarbon FC (Myanmar), Buriram United FC (Thailand) and SHB Đà Nẵng FC (Việt Nam).
While Laos, Myanmar and Việt Nam battle for a semi-final spot, Cambodia will go straight to the semi-final, as it was runner-up in last year’s tournament. Similarly, Thailand will proceed directly to the finals as it was overall champion in 2015.
The total prize money for this year’s tournament--which was funded by Toyota Motor Asia Pacific in 2014 under the Toyota Mekong Football Project - is US$173,000, of which $75,000 will be presented to the overall champion.
Based on fan feedback, some changes to the format of the tournament have also been made this year. For instance, two finals matches will be played instead of just one as in previous years. This means that the winner of the semi-final match will play against Thailand on January 4 in their home country and on January 8 in Thailand.
“Over the past two years, the championship has seen a wider audience, and I hope to see its continued growth. The event is more than just a football tournament. It is our hope that this championship will provide a platform for the players to pursue their passion, develop their skills and contribute to the development of local sports culture,” said Kyoichi Tanada, managing officer of Toyota Motor Corporation and President of Toyota Motors Thailand. — VNS