afghanistan football
Afghanistan players celebrate after their 4-1 win over Maldives in their final Group B gameAFC / Twitter

Afghanistan take on Sri Lanka in the second semi final match of the 11th edition of the SAFF Cup on Thursday, 31 December, at the Trivandrum International Stadium in Kerala.

In the first match of the day, India take on Maldives at the same venue, and by the start of the second semifinal game, we will get to know the team that either defending champions Afghanistan or Sri Lanka will be facing in the final of the competition on 3 January, 2016.

On paper, there are more chances of seeing India play Afghanistan in the new year, with a repeat of the 2013 SAFF Cup final on the cards.

Afghanistan come into the game with an invincible form in the competition this time. They have won all their previous three Group B games, and have scored a total of 11 times, conceding just once.

The defending champions look the clear favourites against the Lankan Lions, who were defeated by Stephen Constantine's army in their opening game of the SAFF Cup 2015.

Afghanistan national football team captain Faysal Shayesteh, who has two goals in the competitions so far, has said that his team has the quality, but that won't be enough to get the win over Sri Lanka today. 

"I think Sri Lanka had 5 days off, so they are better prepared. [But] I think we have better qualities than them," Faysal was quoted by the official website of SAFF Cup. "But this is football and in a semi final, qualities are not important.

"We have respect for them. We have a job to do. I prepare just like every other game. Every game for the National team is the same for me."

Sri Lanka, meanwhile, have won just one game in the competition -- their opening game against Nepal -- and have scored just once in two games. Sampath Perera, the head coach of the Sri Lanka national football team, mentioned ahead of the game that he has no major injury issues in the side, and that is a boon going into the game.

Where to watch live

The kickoff of the game between Afghanistan and Sri Lanka is scheduled for 6:30 pm IST on New Year's Eve.

The entire subcontinent can catch the game on Star Sports 4/HD 4 (except Afghanistan) and stream it live on and Hotstar.

Viewers in Afghanistan can watch the game on Moby Q.

Live streaming for the entire subcontinent is available on the official SAFF Cup YouTube account.

Other TV listings: Television Maldives (Maldives), Doordarshan (India), BBS (Bhutan), Bangladesh TV (Bangladesh).

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