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The road to Tokyo

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  • Tokyo 2020 will host the 25th edition of the Men's Olympic Football Tournament
  • 16 teams, including hosts Japan, will compete to win the gold medal
  • We reveal the qualification dates and details for each confederation

Only 16 teams will have the privilege of vying for the gold medal at the Men's Olympic Football Tournament Tokyo 2020, the best of the best, which is why booking a place at the competition is an achievement in and of itself.

As the host nation, Japan automatically qualify to compete in the tournament. They have been joined by Europe's four qualifiers: Spain, Germany, Romania and France.

The question now is, what does your national team need to do to fill one of the 11 remaining places in Tokyo next year?

Let's take a look at the regional qualification tournaments that will take place throughout the year and next, in chronological order:

The UEFA European U-21 Championship took place in Italy and San Marino from 16 June to 30 June, where the top four teams at the end of the tournament qualified for Tokyo 2020. Spain finished as champions, defeating Germany 2-1 in the final. Of the four European nations that participated at the previous Men's Olympic Football Tournament at Rio 2016, only Germany will return to Tokyo 2020.

Qualified teams for Tokyo 2020: Spain, Germany, Romania and France

The OFC Men's Olympic Qualifier 2019 will be held in Fiji from 21 September to 5 October, where eight teams will compete for one coveted spot at Tokyo 2020. Fiji represented the region at Rio 2016 for the first time, while New Zealand had qualified for London 2012 and Beijing 2008.

OFC Men's Olympic Tournament 2019 Groups:
Group A: New Zealand, Solomon Islands, American Samoa, Samoa
Group B: Fiji, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, Tonga

The CAF U-23 Africa Cup of Nations will take place in Egypt from 8 to 22 November, where eight nations will vie for three qualification tickets to Tokyo 2020. Nigeria are the defending champions, having qualified alongside Algeria and South Africa last time out.

Three spots at Tokyo 2020 will be up for grabs at the AFC U-23 Championship Thailand 2020, which will be held from 8 to 26 January. Sixteen nations will take part in the region's final qualification tournament. If Japan reach the semi-finals, all three of the other semi-finalists will be guaranteed qualification to the Men's Olympic Football Tournament as Japan are automatically allocated a spot as hosts. Japan, Korea Republic and Iraq were the three Asian nations who competed at the last Olympic tournament at Rio 2016.

South America
Colombia will host the South American U-23 qualifying tournament in early 2020 with the exact dates still to be confirmed. The top two teams from the competition will book tickets to Tokyo 2020. Argentina and Colombia qualified last time out, while Brazil, qualified for Rio 206 as hosts, went on to win gold.

North, Central America and Caribbean
The Concacaf's Men's Olympic Qualifying Tournament is scheduled to take place from 20 March to 1 April in Guadalajara, Mexico. The tournament will see eight teams from the region compete for two spots at Tokyo 2020.

Updated on 22 August 2019

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