If you are a Spurs fan, then you will be reeling with the double-blow that has seen England striker Harry Kane pick up an injury ruling him out until March, while at the same time, prolific and in-form South Korean star Son Hyeon-Min will be absent for a few weeks as he competes in the Asian Cup for his home nation.

Little is known in the UK about one of Asian football’s most prestigious competitions and despite the fact that a number of players have been called up by their national teams to participate along with Son, including Cardiff goalkeeper Neil Etheridge, the whole Asian Cup remains a mystery even to football fans who regard themselves as having a deeper knowledge of the world game.

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So with that in mind, we are bringing you our guide to the Asian Cup. Who is competing, what the tournament is and who are the teams and players to watch for the remainder of the tournament. Of course, we are also going to give you our tip on who out of the remaining teams, stands the best chance of success.

So if you fancy a flutter on the Asian Cup, then remember to make your bet with bet365 Sport. New customers can earn up to £100 in bet credits when they sign up using the current bet365 Sport New Player Bonus.

What is the Asian Cup?

After the Copa America, the Asian Cup is the second oldest continental football championship, founded in 1956. The tournament has been held every four years since 1956 until 2004, after which there was a three year gap to the 2007 tournament with the tournament then taking place every four years since in 2011, 2015 and 2019.

The 2019 tournament is being held in the United Arab Emirates and for the first time has featured 24 teams (expanded from the 16 teams that competed in 2015).

The tournament began with a group stage which saw six groups of four teams. Each of the top two teams in each group qualified for the knockout phase of the tournament, along with the four third placed teams in each group with the best record.

From then on, the tournament is a straight knockout tournament, with extra time and penalties used to decide the winner in the event of a draw.

  • Asian Cup Winners

There have been eight different winners of the Asian Cup, and four of these teams have won the title on multiple occasions.

  • Japan – 4 wins (1992, 2000, 2004, 2011)
  • Saudi Arabia – 3 wins (1984, 1988, 1996)
  • Iran – 3 wins (1968, 1972, 1976)
  • South Korea – 2 wins (1956, 1960)
  • Israel – 1 win (1964)
  • Kuwait – 1 win (1980)
  • Iraq – 1 win (2007)
  • Australia – 1 win (2015)

The team with the most appearances in the final is both Saudi Arabia and South Korea, who have both reached the final on six occasions in total and both these teams are amongst the favourites to do so again this year.

Who is left in the tournament?

The group stage of the tournament has been played and currently the Asian Cup is at the Round of 16 stage. Three games have been completed out of the eight played, with one ongoing at the time of writing.

The first three results from the Round of 16 were:

  • Jordan 1-1 Vietnam (Vietnam won 4-2 on penalties)
  • Thailand 1-2 China
  • Iran 2-0 Oman

The remaining five games in the Round of 16 are as follows:

  • Japan v Saudi Arabia
  • Australia v Uzbekistan
  • United Arab Emirates v Kyrgyzstan
  • South Korea v Bahrain
  • Qatar v Iraq

The winner of the Japan v Saudi Arabia game will face Vietnam in the quarterfinals, while the winners of the South Korea v Bahrain and Qatar v Iraq clash will contest one quarter final, with the two winners of the other two games from the Round of 16 making up the final quarterfinal.

Who are the teams most likely to win the tournament?

There’s no doubting that there is a greater disparity in ability between the top teams in Asia and the best of the rest and as such, there are probably only a handful of teams that will feel they have a genuine chance of winning the tournament.

Japan and Saudi Arabia would be many people’s choice, given their strong record in tournaments, but these teams face each other in the Round of 16 and my money would be on Japan earning a place in the quarterfinals, as such I feel they are amongst the top sides to consider for the win.

Current holders Australia are another side who will go close while the Iranian team is talented, but for me the South Korea team looks the strongest of the team remaining in the tournament and if pushed, they would be my pick to win the event.

The winners of the tournament will be Asia’s qualifier for the 2021 Confederations Cup.

The star of the tournament so far has been Qatar’s Sudanese born striker Almoez Ali, who has netted an impressive seven goals for his country so far, scoring four against North Korea, two against Saudi Arabia and a single strike in the 2-0 win over Lebanon in their opening group game.

Is betting available on the Asian Cup?

Yes, bet365 offers a wide range of bets on each game in the Asian Cup with over 100 different markets available to bet on in most of the games and there will be likely more markets to select from as we head to the business end of the tournament in the quarterfinals, semifinals and the eventual final.

Can I watch the Asian Cup?

The great news for bet365 Sport customers is that if you have placed a bet within the preceding 24-hours, or if you have a funded account, then you can watch all the action at the Asian Cup unfolding in real time thanks to bet365’s Live Streaming service.

In addition, you can also watch the Live Stream of any of the remaining games, as well as enjoy all the latest In Play betting on the match together at bet365. This makes enjoying a flutter on the game as easy as possible.

Bet365 has an extensive Live Streaming service from the Asian Cup which will cover all the games in the tournament right the way through to the final which is due to take place on Friday 1st February at 2pm UK Time.