Dream Asian Cup draw for City of Newcastle

Newcastle will host defending Champions Japan as well as a semi-final potentially featuring the Socceroos at next year's Asian Cup.

The City of Newcastle will host defending Champions Japan as well as a semi-final potentially featuring the Socceroos at next year's AFC Asian Cup.

The Blue Samurai will begin their title defence at Newcastle Stadium on January 12 against the winner of the AFC Challenge Cup.

Newcastle will also host the Group A match between Oman and Kuwait on January 17.

The Socceroos have been drawn with the Oman, Kuwait and Korea Republic in Group A of the AFC Asian Cup 2015 following last night's draw at the iconic Sydney Opera House.

Should the Socceroos finish second in Group A and progress to the semi-final stage of the tournament, they would play their semi-final in Newcastle.

Newcastle is also set to host the playoff match for 3rd and 4th.

As host nation, the Socceroos were seeded in the top tier of teams for the tournament and were placed in the A1 position of the groups.

The Socceroos will face Kuwait in the opening match of the AFC Asian Cup 2015 on 9 January in Melbourne, followed by Oman on 13 January in Sydney with their final group match against Korea Republic on 17 January in Brisbane.

The Socceroos have played Kuwait at senior men-s international level on ten occasions and last played each other back in January 2010 in an AFC Asian Cup 2011 Qualifier in Kuwait where they drew 2-2.

The Socceroos have defeated Oman three times, drawn three times and lost once.

The Socceroos were also drawn with the Korea Republic at the AFC Asian Cup 2011 and have met 26 times in total, the most recent match at the EAFF East Asian Cup where they played out a scoreless draw.

AFC Asian Cup 2015 - Groups Group A: Australia (63), Korea Republic (60), Oman (81), Kuwait (110) Group B: Uzbekistan (55), Saudi Arabia (75), China PR (98), DPR Korea (133) Group C: Iran (42), UAE (61), Qatar (101), Bahrain (106) Group D: Japan (48), Jordan (66), Iraq (103), Winner of AFC Challenge Cup 2014 (Maldives, Palestine, Kyrgyzstan, Myanmar, Turkmenistan, Philippines, Afghanistan or Laos)

Number in brackets is the latest FIFA Ranking as at 13 March 2014 The Final of the AFC Challenge Cup will be played on 30 May 2014.

AFC Asian Cup 2015 - Fixtures Group A: Australia, Korea Republic, Oman, Kuwait 09 Jan 2015: Australia v Kuwait, Melbourne Rectangular Stadium, Melbourne 10 Jan 2015: Korea Republic v Oman, Canberra Stadium, Canberra 13 Jan 2015: Kuwait v Korea Republic, Canberra Stadium, Canberra 13 Jan 2015: Oman v Australia, Stadium Australia, Sydney 17 Jan 2015: Australia v Korea Republic, Brisbane Stadium, Brisbane 17 Jan 2015: Oman v Kuwait, Newcastle Stadium, Newcastle

Group B: Uzbekistan, Saudi Arabia, China PR, DPR Korea 10 Jan 2015: Uzbekistan v DPR Korea, Stadium Australia, Sydney 10 Jan 2015: Saudi Arabia v China PR, Brisbane Stadium, Brisbane 14 Jan 2015: DPR Korea v Saudi Arabia, Melbourne Rectangular Stadium, Melbourne 14 Jan 2015: China PR Uzbekistan, Brisbane Stadium, Brisbane 18 Jan 2015: Uzbekistan v Saudi Arabia, Melbourne Rectangular Stadium, Melbourne 18 Jan 2015: China PR v DPR Korea, Canberra Stadium, Canberra

Group C: IR Iran, UAE, Qatar, Bahrain 11 Jan 2015: IR Iran v Bahrain, Melbourne Rectangular Stadium, Melbourne 11 Jan 2015: UAE v Qatar, Canberra Stadium, Canberra 15 Jan 2015: Bahrain v UAE, Canberra Stadium, Canberra 15 Jan 2015: Qatar v IR Iran, Stadium Australia, Sydney 19 Jan 2015: IR Iran v UAE, Brisbane Stadium, Brisbane 19 Jan 2015: Qatar v Bahrain, Stadium Australia, Sydney

Group D: Japan, Jordan, Iraq, Winner of AFC Challenge Cup 2014 (Maldives, Palestine, Kyrgyzstan, Myanmar, Turkmenistan, Philippines, Afghanistan or Laos) 12 Jan 2015: Japan v Winner of AFC Challenge Cup 2014, Newcastle Stadium, Newcastle 12 Jan 2015: Jordan v Iraq, Brisbane Stadium, Brisbane 16 Jan 2015: Winner of AFC Challenge Cup 2014 v Jordan, Melbourne Rectangular Stadium, Melbourne 16 Jan 2015: Iraq v Japan, Brisbane Stadium, Brisbane 20 Jan 2015: Japan v Jordan, Melbourne Rectangular Stadium, Melbourne 20 Jan 2015: Iraq v Winner of AFC Challenge Cup 2014, Canberra Stadium, Canberra

Quarter Finals QF1 - 22 January 2015: 1A v 2B, Melbourne Rectangular Stadium, Melbourne QF2 - 22 January 2015: 1B v 2A, Brisbane Stadium, Brisbane QF3 - 23 January 2015: 1C v 2D, Stadium Australia, Sydney QF4 - 23 January 2015: 1D v 2C, Canberra Stadium, Canberra

Semi Finals SF1 - 26 January 2015: Winner QF1 v Winner QF3, Stadium Australia, Sydney SF2 - 27 January 2015: Winner QF2 v Winner QF4, Newcastle Stadium, Newcastle

3rd/4th Play-Off 30 January 2015: Loser SF1 v Loser SF2, Newcastle Stadium, Newcastle

AFC Asian Cup 2015 Final 31 January 2015: Winner SF1 v Winner SF2, Stadium Australia, Sydney

For more information, please visit www.afcasiancup.com.