North Korea, Malaysia to play Asian Cup games at neutral venue

afc-northkorea-malaysiaKUALA LUMPUR: North Korea and Malaysia will play their Asian Cup final round Group B qualifiers at a neutral venue in November, the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) said on Friday.

Diplomatic relations between the countries soured following the assassination of Kim Jong Nam, the estranged elder half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) in February.

Malaysia has since banned its citizens from travelling to North Korea.

“In the interests of competition fairness, it has been decided that both matches between the two countries will be played at the same neutral venue,” the AFC said in a statement.

North Korea’s “home” match will take place on Nov 10 and the return fixture – Malaysia’s “home” game – three days later, it added.