KOLKATA: Indian men's football team on Tuesday qualified for the Asian Cup Finals after Palestine defeated Philippines in a group B match in Ulaanbaatar.
The result meant that the Palestinians directly qualified for the 24-team finals finishing group toppers, while second placed Philippines, with four points, were eliminated despite finishing second.
Only the winners of the six qualifying groups are sure to advance to the tournament proper, where they will be joined by the five best second-placed teams in respective groups.
India, who are second behind Hong Kong (six points) on goal difference, have qualified ahead of their final round group D clash.
This is for the first time India have qualified for the Asian Cup in two successive editions, having made the group league exit in the 2019 edition.
Overall, India have qualified for the continental showpiece for the fifth time -- 1964, 1984, 2011, 2019 and now in 2023.