Syria's footballers receive big reception in Sharjah ahead of Asian Cup - in pictures

The players have arrived in the UAE ahead of the 24-team tournament, which begins on January 5

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Syria's national side received a popular reception when they arrived in the UAE on Monday ahead of the Asian Cup.

Bernd Stagne's squad were met by a large number of fans as they prepare for the tournament, which runs between January 5 and February 1.

Syria, making their first appearance in the competition since 2011, are in Group B with their first game in Sharjah on January 6 against Palestine.

They will also come up against Jordan on January 10 and Australia on January 15, with both those matches in Al Ain at the Khalifa bin Zayed Stadium.

Syria are aiming to get out of the group stages for the first time in their history, having failed to reach the knockout stages at their five previous appearances.

The Asian Cup has been expanded for 2019, with the number of teams increasing from 16 to 24, with 51 matches in total to be played across eight stadiums in the UAE.

Tickets for matches start from Dh25 and can be bought online at


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