BEIJING, Sept. 5 (Xinhua) -- China has withdrawn its bid to host the Asian Cup soccer tournament in 2019, the Chinese Football Association (CFA) confirmed on Thursday.
"The CFA notified the Asian Football Confederation of its intention to host the 2019 Asian Cup earlier this year. But, after a thorough analysis and review, the CFA has decided to withdraw from the bidding process," the CFA said in a statement.
Eleven countries had expressed their interest to host Asia Cup 2019 when the bidding started. In addition to China, Lebanon, Malaysia and Myanmar have since pulled out of the race. Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain, Oman, Kuwait, Iran and Thailand are still in contention.
China last staged the Asian Cup in 2004.
Australia is slated to host the next edition of the continent's soccer showpiece in 2015.