The Full Wiki

AFC Champions League: Wikis

Advertisements
  
  
  

Note: Many of our articles have direct quotes from sources you can cite, within the Wikipedia article! This article doesn't yet, but we're working on it! See more info or our list of citable articles.

Encyclopedia

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

AFC Champions League
AFC Champions League crest.png
Founded 2002
Region Asia (AFC)
Number of teams 32
Current champions South Korea Pohang Steelers
Most successful club South Korea Pohang Steelers
(3 times)
2010 AFC Champions League

The AFC Champions League is the modern premier Asian club football competition hosted annually by Asian Football Confederation (AFC). The tournament is contested among the top thirty clubs from top 10 Asian leagues joined with two more clubs who qualified through the playoffs. The champions receive about US$2.25 million in prize money (specific amount depends on record from the group stage) and most importantly a spot in the FIFA Club World Cup at the end of the year.

Starting 2009 season, the defending champion no longer receives an automatic berth, forcing them to qualify through their respective domestic league or cup competition. However, both 2008 champions, Gamba Osaka, and 2009 champions, Pohang Steelers, both managed to qualify for the following season. The qualifying round starts in late February and the single-match final takes place in early November at a neutral venue. In 2010, the qualifiying rounds will start bit early, due to 2010 World Cup in the summer.

Pohang Steelers is currently the most successful club in the competition's history, having won their third title in 2009. League-wise, the Korean K-League has 8 titles and is the most successful league competition followed by the Japanese J. League which has 5 previous winners. In the last four season (2006-2009), both J and K League has captured 2 titles each, showing the dominance by the Eastern clubs.

Contents

History

Advertisements

Asian Champion Club Tournament Era (1967–1972)

The competition started as the Asian Champion Club Tournament back in 1967. Eight domestic champions from eight Asian leagues competed in the inaugural season. With the exception of 1968 season, the tournament was held annually until 1971. During this first four editions, two Israeli clubs from Tel Aviv took three championships. In 1972, the tournament canceled due to a lack of interests which eventually resulted in withdrawals of most participants except for two clubs. The tournament was not held for next fourteen years. This also because professionalism in Asian club football did not start till late 90s and early 2000s.

Asian Club Championship Era (1985/86–2001/02)

Using old European Cup as a model, the tournament returned to Asia during the 1985/86 season with a new name, Asian Club Championship. Entry was restricted to the domestic champions of certain Asian leagues. Even so, few withdrawal were seen from year to year. From 1990, AFC introduced Asian Cup Winners Cup which, as the name suggest, was also restricted to domestic cup winners. The winners of these two Asian tournaments then played at the Asian Super Cup.

AFC Champions League Era (2002/03–present)

2002/03 season

From 2002/03 season the three major Asian club competitions, Asian Champions Cup, Asian Cup Winners Cup, and Asian Super Cup were merged into one larger tournament and re-branded as AFC Champions League. In the previous years, the domestic champions and cup winners were sorted into two different continental tournaments, but now both domestic champions and cup winners enter into this larger competition. In the first edition, after several qualifying rounds, a total of sixteen clubs participated in group stage. One club from each group hosted the group stage which were conducted with the single round-robin format in a week. Four group winners then qualified to the semifinals, which unsurprising were the four hosts of the group stage. The semifinal and the finals were contested in two-legged aggregate series.

2003/04 season

The 2003/04 season was cancelled due to SARS virus outbreak.

2004–2008 seasons

The tournament was re-launched in 2004 season with 28 clubs from fourteen countries. Unlike previous year, tournament schedule was changed from March to November. In the group stage, the 28 clubs were divided into seven groups of four on a regional basis, separating East Asian and West Asian clubs to reduce traveling costs, and played double round-robin in home and away basis. Then, seven group winners along with defending champions qualified to the quarterfinals. The quarterfinals, semifinals, and finals were two-legged series, with away goals, extra time, and penalties used as tie-breakers. In 2005 season Syrian clubs joined the competition, thus increasing the number of participating countries to 15, and two years later, following their transfer into the AFC in 2006, Australian clubs were also included in the tournament. With lack of professionalism in Asian football, many problem still existed in the tournament, such as on the field violence and late submission of the player registration. Many blamed the lack of prize money and expensive travel cost as the some of the reasons. However, with the introduction of FIFA World Club Championship in 2005 (now known as FIFA Club World Cup), inclusion of English media via the A-League, and two consecutive wins by Japanese sides (the most professional football league in Asia), allowed to set up a more competitive and more professional format in 2009.

2009–present

The Champions League expanded to 32 clubs and direct entry is limited to the top ten Asian leagues. Each country will receive up to 4 slots, though no more than one third of the number of teams in that country's top division, rounded downwards, depending on the strength of their league, league structure (professionalism), marketability, financial status, and other criteria set out by the AFC Pro-League committee.[1] The assessment criteria and ranking for participating associations will be revised by AFC every two years, with the most recent ones being approved for 2011–2012 seasons.[2]

The prize money has been significantly increased since 2009 season and the clubs can earn some prize money even at the group stage depending on their performance. The group stage is conducted in the same manner as the previous four tournaments; this time, however, now eight group winners and eight runners-up qualify to the Round of 16, in which group-winners play host to the runners-up in a single match format, matched regionally. The regional restriction is lifted from the further stages, though since 2010 season the clubs from the same country cannot face each other in the quarterfinals. The quarterfinals and the semifinals are played in two-legged series, with away goal, extra time, and penalties used as tie-breakers. The final is played as a single match at a pre-determined neutral venue.

Current Regulations

Qualification

The qualifications are based on AFC Final Assessment Rankings (see below). The assessments was conducted by AFC Pro-League committee during 2006–08, and is based on the football competitiveness, professionalism, marketability, and financial status of the league and its clubs. Leagues can have up to four spots, but no more than one third of the number of teams in that country's top division, rounded downwards. However, some leagues may have to enter their clubs through qualifying playoffs. The previous year AFC Cup finalists may also enter qualifying play-offs given that their league meets the AFC Champions League criteria. The assessment ranking will be updated every two years, as the next one will be published in November 2010.[3]

AFC Final Assessment Ranking for 2008–2009 seasons
West Asia
Pos Member
Association
Points
(total 500)
Clubs Spots
Group stage Play-off AFC Cup
4 Saudi Arabia Saudi Arabia 365 12 4 0 0
5 United Arab Emirates UAE 356 12 3 1 0
7 Iran Iran 340 18 4 0 0
9 Uzbekistan Uzbekistan 289 16 2 0 1
10 Qatar Qatar 270 10 2 0 0
13 India India 202 10 0 1 1
15 Syria Syria 229 n/a 0 0 2
16 Jordan Jordan 212 n/a 0 0 2
17 Kuwait Kuwait 203 n/a 0 0 2
20 Oman Oman 140 n/a 0 0 2
21 Bahrain Bahrain 139 n/a 0 0 2
East Asia
Pos Member
Association
Points
(total 500)
Clubs Spots
Group stage Play-off AFC Cup
1 Japan Japan 470 18 4 0 0
2 South Korea South Korea 441 15 4 0 0
3 People's Republic of China China 431 16 4 0 0
6 Australia Australia 343 10 2 0 0
8 Indonesia Indonesia 296 18 1 1 1
11 Singapore Singapore 279 12 0 1 1
12 Thailand Thailand 221 16 0 1 1
14 Vietnam Vietnam 191 14 0 1 1
18 Malaysia Malaysia 179 14 0 0 2
19 Hong Kong Hong Kong 148 n/a 0 0 2
Meet the criteria
Do not meet the criteria

Format

Qualifying play-off

8 teams, 2 knock-out rounds, each 1 leg, on a regional basis, 2 winners qualify for the group stage.

Group Stage

A total of 32 clubs are divided into 8 groups of four, based on region i.e. East Asian and South-east Asian clubs are drawn in Group E to H, while the rest are grouped in Group A to D. Each group is a double round robin, for a total of 6 matches for each team. Clubs receive 3 points for a win, 1 point for a draw, and 0 points for a loss. The clubs are ranked according to points and tie breakers are in following order:

  • Points earned between the clubs in question
  • Goal Difference between the clubs in question
  • Goals For between the clubs in question
  • Goal Difference within the group
  • Goals For within the group

The eight group winners and eight runners-up qualify to the Knock-out Round.

Knock-out Round, Round-of-16

Group winners vs group runners-up, 1 leg, on a regional basis.

Knock-out Round, Quarterfinals & Semifinal

All 8 clubs are randomly matched; however, starting 2010 season[4], the clubs from same country cannot face each other in the quarter-finals. The games are conducted in 2 legs -home and away- where the aggregate goals decides the match winner. If the aggregate goals cannot produce a winner the away goals rule is used. If still tied the clubs play extra time, where the away goals rule still applies. If still tied after extra time, the game goes to penalties.

Final

One 90-min game at a neutral venue. If tied after regulation, extra-time, penalty kick will be used to produce a winner.

Sponsors

On 5 November 2008 it was announced that Qatar’s leading telecom company Qtel will sponsor the 2011 AFC Asian Cup and the AFC Champions League from 2009-2012. [5]

On 8 January 2009 it was confirmed that Emirates Airline signed a four-year extension to its sponsorship deal with AFC. [6]

In November 2009, the AFC signed a $1 billion 8-year deal with WSG starting 2013. Most of this money will be allocated to the AFC Champions League. [7]

Prize money

The budget for the tournament has increased from US $4 million in 2008 to US $20 million in 2009, with the total prize pool now equalling US $14 million. The winner receives US $1.5 million in prize money plus additional winnings collected from the earlier rounds.[8][9] Clubs receive a travel subsidy for each away match. Thus, for each round of 16 tie, only one club receives a travel subsidy.

Group stages
  • Win: $40,000
  • Draw: $20,000
  • Loss: $0
  • Travel subsidy: $30,000 x 3
Round of 16
  • Participation: $50,000
  • Travel subsidy: $40,000
Quarter-finals
  • Participation: $80,000
  • Travel subsidy: $50,000
Semi-finals
  • Participation: $120,000
  • Travel subsidy: $60,000
Final
  • Champions: $1.5 million
  • Runners-up: $750,000
  • Travel subsidy: $60,000

Participating Associations

Associations Spots
2002/03 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010
East Asia
Australia Australia 2 2 2 2
People's Republic of China China PR 2 2 2 2 2 2 4 4
Indonesia Indonesia 0 2 2 0 2 0 1 1
Japan Japan 2 2 2 2 2 3 4 4
South Korea Korea Republic 2 2 2 2 3 2 4 4
Singapore Singapore 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1
Thailand Thailand 2 2 2 0 1 2 0 0
Vietnam Vietnam 0 2 2 2 1 2 0 0
Total 8 12 12 8 13 13 16 16
West Asia
Bahrain Bahrain 0 2 0 0 0 0 0 0
India India 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Iran Iran 2 2 2 2 1 2 4 4
Iraq Iraq 1 2 2 2 2 2 0 0
Kuwait Kuwait 0 2 2 2 2 2 0 0
Qatar Qatar 1 2 2 2 2 2 2 2
Saudi Arabia Saudi Arabia 1 2 3 3 2 2 4 4
Syria Syria 0 0 2 2 2 2 0 0
Turkmenistan Turkmenistan 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
United Arab Emirates UAE 1 3 2 2 2 2 4 4
Uzbekistan Uzbekistan 1 2 2 2 2 2 2 2
Total 8 17 17 17 15 16 16 16
Total
16 29 29 25 28 29 32 32

Asian Champions League Finals

AFC Champions League

One leg finals (2009-present)
Season Winner Score Runner-up Venue Attendance
2010 Nov. Japan National Stadium, Tokyo
2009 South Korea Pohang Steelers 2 – 1 Saudi Arabia Al-Ittihad Japan National Stadium, Tokyo 25,743
Two-leg finals (2003-2008)
Year Home team Score Away team Venue Attendance
2008 Japan Gamba Osaka 3–0 Australia Adelaide United Osaka Expo '70 Stadium 20,639
Australia Adelaide United 0–2 Japan Gamba Osaka Hindmarsh Stadium 17,000
Gamba Osaka won 5 – 0 on aggregate
2007 Iran Sepahan 1–1 Japan Urawa Red Diamonds Foolad Shahr Stadium 30,000
Japan Urawa Red Diamonds 2–0 Iran Sepahan Saitama Stadium 59,034
Urawa Red Diamonds won 3 – 1 on aggregate
2006 South Korea Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors 2–0 Syria Al-Karamah Jeonju World Cup Stadium 25,830
Syria Al-Karamah 2–1 South Korea Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors Khaled bin Walid Stadium 40,000
Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors won 3 – 2 on aggregate
2005 United Arab Emirates Al-Ain 1–1 Saudi Arabia Al-Ittihad Tahnoun Bin Mohamed Stadium
Saudi Arabia Al-Ittihad 4–2 United Arab Emirates Al-Ain Prince Abdullah al-Faisal stadium
Al-Ittihad won 5 – 3 on aggregate
2004 Saudi Arabia Al-Ittihad 1–3 South Korea Seongnam Ilhwa Chunma Prince Abdullah al-Faisal stadium
South Korea Seongnam Ilhwa Chunma 0–5 Saudi Arabia Al-Ittihad Tancheon Sports Complex
Al-Ittihad won 6 – 3 on aggregate
2003 United Arab Emirates Al-Ain 2–0 Thailand BEC Tero Sasana Tahnoun Bin Mohamed Stadium
Thailand BEC Tero Sasana 1–0 United Arab Emirates Al-Ain Rajamangala Stadium
Al-Ain won 2 – 1 on aggregate

Asian Club Championship (1985-2002)

Season Winner Score Runner-up Venue
2001-02 Suwon Samsung Bluewings
South Korea
0 – 0
(4-2 PSO)
Anyang LG Cheetahs
South Korea
Iran Azadi Stadium, Tehran
2000-01 Suwon Samsung Bluewings
South Korea
1 – 0 Júbilo Iwata
Japan
South Korea Suwon World Cup Stadium, Suwon
1999-2000 Al-Hilal
Saudi Arabia
3 – 2 Júbilo Iwata
Japan
Saudi Arabia King Fahd Stadium, Riyadh
1998-99 Júbilo Iwata
Japan
2 – 1 Esteghlal
Iran
Iran Azadi Stadium, Tehran
1997-98 Pohang Steelers
South Korea
0 – 0
(6-5 PSO)
Dalian Wanda
People's Republic of China
Hong Kong Hong Kong Stadium, Hong Kong
1996-97 Pohang Steelers
South Korea
2 – 1 Cheonan Ilhwa Chunma
South Korea
Malaysia Kuala Lumpur
1995-96 Ilhwa Chunma
South Korea
1 – 0 Al-Nasr
Saudi Arabia
Saudi Arabia King Fahd Stadium, Riyadh
1994-95 Thai Farmers Bank
Thailand
1 – 0 Al-Arabi
Qatar
Thailand Bangkok
1993-94 Thai Farmers Bank
Thailand
2 – 1 Oman Club
Oman
Thailand Bangkok
1992-93 PAS Tehran
Iran
1 – 0 Al-Shabab
Saudi Arabia
Bahrain Bahrain
1991-92 Al-Hilal
Saudi Arabia
1 – 1
(4-3 PSO)
Esteghlal
Iran
Qatar Doha
1990-91 Esteghlal
Iran
2 – 1 Liaoning FC
People's Republic of China
Bangladesh Bangabandhu National Stadium, Dhaka
1989-90 Liaoning FC
People's Republic of China
3 – 2
(aggregate)
Nissan FC
Japan
Two-leg finals
1988-89 Al-Sadd
Qatar
3 – 3
(aggregate, away goals win)
Al-Rasheed
Iraq
Two-leg finals
1987-88 Yomiuri FC
Japan
w/o2 Al-Hilal
Saudi Arabia
Two-leg finals
1986-87 Furukawa Electric
Japan
1 Al-Hilal
Saudi Arabia
Saudi Arabia Riyadh
1985-86 Daewoo Royals
South Korea
3 – 1 Al-Ahli
Saudi Arabia
Saudi Arabia Jeddah

1 The championship was decided in a final pool of four teams.
2 Yomiuri FC were declared champions after Al-Hilal objected to the match officials that were chosen for the first leg and refused to participate in the final.

Asian Champion Club Tournament (1967-1972)

Season Winner Score Runner-up Venue
1971 Maccabi Tel Aviv
Israel
2 - 01 Al-Shorta
Iraq
Thailand Bangkok
1970 Taj
Iran
2 – 1 Hapoel Tel Aviv
Israel
Iran Amjadieh Stadium, Tehran
1969 Maccabi Tel Aviv
Israel
1 – 0 Yangzee FC
South Korea
Thailand Bangkok
1967 Hapoel Tel Aviv
Israel
2 – 1 Selangor FA
Malaysia
Thailand Bangkok

1 Maccabi were declared champions after Al-Shorta refused to play in the final for political reasons.

Participating Associations by Debut

Asian Club Championship (included qualifying round)

Italics are Withdraw association.

AFC Champions League

Non Participating Associations

AFC Champions League records and statistics

By Nation

The following table lists countries by number of winners and runner-up in AFC Champions League (Asian Club Championship also included).

South Korea is the current leader with 8 titles.

# Nation Winners Runners-up
1  South Korea 8 4
2  Japan 5 3
3  Saudi Arabia 4 5
4  Iran 3 3
5  Israel 3 1
6  Thailand 2 1
7  China 1 2
8  Qatar 1 1
 United Arab Emirates 1 1
10  Iraq 0 2
11  Australia 0 1
 Malaysia 0 1
 Oman 0 1
 Syria 0 1

By Club

The following table lists Clubs by number of winners and runner-up in AFC Champions League (Asian Club Championship also included).

# Team Winners Runners-Up Years Won Years Lost
1 South Korea Pohang Steelers 3 0 (1996-97, 1997-98, 2009) -
2 Saudi Arabia Al-Hilal 2 2 (1991-92, 1999-2000) (1986-87, 1987-88)
Iran Esteghlal 2 2 (1970, 1990-91) (1991-92, 1998-99)
4 Saudi Arabia Al-Ittihad 2 1 (2004, 2005) (2009)
5 South Korea Suwon Samsung Bluewings 2 0 (2000-01, 2001-02) -
Thailand Thai Farmers Bank 2 0 (1993-94, 1994-95) -
Israel Maccabi Tel Aviv 2 0 (1969, 1971) -
8 Japan Jubilo Iwata 1 2 (1998-99) (1999-2000, 2000-2001)
South Korea Seongnam Ilhwa Chunma 1 2 (1995-96) (1996-97, 2004)
10 United Arab Emirates Al-Ain 1 1 (2002-03) (2005)
People's Republic of China Liaoning FC 1 1 (1989-90) (1990-91)
Israel Hapoel Tel Aviv 1 1 (1967) (1970)
13 Japan Gamba Osaka 1 0 (2008) -
Japan Urawa Red Diamonds 1 0 (2007) -
South Korea Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors 1 0 (2006) -
Iran PAS Tehran 1 0 (1992-93) -
Qatar Al-Sadd 1 0 (1988-89) -
Japan Tokyo Verdy 1 0 (1987-88) -
Japan JEF United Chiba 1 0 (1986-87) -
South Korea Busan I'Park 1 0 (1985-86) -
21 Australia Adelaide United 0 1 - (2008)
Iran Sepahan 0 1 - (2007)
Syria Al-Karamah 0 1 - (2006)
Thailand BEC Tero Sasana 0 1 - (2002-03)
South Korea FC Seoul 0 1 - (2001-02)
People's Republic of China Dalian Wanda 0 1 - (1997-98)
Saudi Arabia Al-Nasr 0 1 - (1995-96)
Qatar Al-Arabi 0 1 - (1994-95)
Oman Oman Club 0 1 - (1993-94)
Saudi Arabia Al-Shabab 0 1 - (1992-93)
Japan Yokohama F. Marinos 0 1 - (1989-90)
Iraq Al Rasheed 0 1 - (1988-89)
Saudi Arabia Al-Ahli 0 1 - (1985-86)
Iraq Al-Shorta 0 1 - (1972)
South Korea Yangzee FC 0 1 - (1969)
Malaysia Selangor FA 0 1 - (1967)

By Club Statistics

Top Scorers

Year Footballer Club Goals
2002-03 People's Republic of China Hao Haidong People's Republic of China Dalian Shide 9
2004 South Korea Kim Do-Hoon South Korea Seongnam Ilhwa Chunma 9
2005 Sierra Leone Mohamed Kallon Saudi Arabia Al-Ittihad 6
2006 Brazil Magno Alves Japan Gamba Osaka 9
2007 Brazil Mota South Korea Seongnam Ilhwa Chunma 7
2008 Thailand Nantawat Thansopa Thailand Krung Thai Bank 9
2009 Brazil Leandro Japan Gamba Osaka 10

Fair Play Award

Year Club
2008 Japan Gamba Osaka
2009 South Korea Pohang Steelers

See also

References

External links


Simple English

The AFC Champions League is a football competition between the best club teams in Asia. The teams are selected because of good performances in matches.


Advertisements






Got something to say? Make a comment.
Your name
Your email address
Message