Myanmar teams pull out of tournaments amid post-coup violence


SHAN United FC.

SHAN United FC. Asian Football Confederation PHOTO

Two Myanmar football teams have withdrawn from Asian tournaments, officials said Friday, as the country grapples with violence following a military coup in February.

Shan United FC has pulled out of the AFC Champions League, the continent’s top club competition, while Hantharwady United FC has withdrawn from the AFC Cup, the second-tier continental club tournament.

Announcing the news, the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) said it “acknowledged the challenges as well as the present complexities” caused by the situation in Myanmar.

A preliminary stage match between Shan United and Melbourne City FC has been axed, and the Australian side now advances automatically to the playoff round, they said.

Hantharwady United’s playoff match has been canceled.

Myanmar has been in turmoil since the generals seized power, ousting civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi and unleashing a wave of near-daily street protests calling for a return to democracy.

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