well, look at pool I and the other pools and tell me this is balanced or fair. this is pathetic and as usual, because the gulf nations have tons of oil money. that's where the corruption flows from.
i see your point about pools of 3, but the problem of imbalance due to the late withdrawing of teams would be lessened if they had 6 pools of 4 rather than 8 pools of 3. maybe even 4 pools of 6 would work better.
i get what you mean on pool of 3, which made more strong teams divided into the other half in the classification round.
at least, the host doesnt make it worse where the quarterfinal will be a draw to determine the match pairs. Pool I+Pool K as well as Pool J + Pool L will be the final champion half zone, it seems pretty fair. UAE just wanna be safe before quarterfinal starts, its acceptable from my side.
however, i still get no clue that the withdrawal is relating to the so called inbalanced pool combination.