April 23: The Indonesian capital city of Jakarta, where so many great football matches have been played over the years, will help set the scene for this year’s AFF Suzuki Cup when it stages the event’s Official Draw next week.

Coaches, players, officials and event partners will be in attendance on May 2 at Hotel Mulia Senayan to find out who plays who and where.

This year will be particularly exciting as a new format is being used with each nation playing two matches at home and two matches away before the leading four progress to the semi-finals.

Through this new schedule organisers are confident they will be able to touch more fans in their home stadiums and allow them to rally behind their football heroes.

This is the first time this format has been used and it also means eight more matches will be played in the Final Rounds of the competition.

It is a mouth-watering prospect that will create bigger and better exposure for the competing teams and for all of the tournament’s partners.

Nine nations will be in the Draw: Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam

Brunei and Timor Leste will contest the 10th remaining berth in tournament in two home-and-away matches – to be played on September 1 and 8.

All eyes will be on Indonesia’s coach Luis Milla at the Draw.

To the surprise and delight of many, Indonesia reached the final of the AFF Suzuki Cup for a fifth time two years under the guidance of Alfred Riedl.

Spaniard Milla, a former player with both Real Madrid and Barcelona, took over as coach from Riedl in early 2017 and will be under pressure to deliver another successful campaign.

Malaysia’s new coach Tan Cheng Hoe has also confirmed he will attend the Draw.

He took over as national football head coach after Portuguese Eduardo Vingada stepped down in December last year following a string of poor results.Tan is a former Kedah coach and was appointed as an assistant to Vingada last year.

He will look to guide them to a vastly improved performance in this year’s AFF Suzuki Cup as in 2016 they failed to progress from the Group stages. Malaysia claimed the title in 2010 and were runners-up in 1996 and 2014.

This year marks the 12th staging of the AFF Suzuki Cup and Thailand enter the tournament as defending champions having triumphed for a record fifth time in 2016.