Stoppage Time – International Football Blog

AFC: Asian competitions start to heat up

Posted in Asian Football by peterbein on May 26, 2010
Pohang Steelers

Pohang Steelers are the defending AFC Champions League holders

The quarter-final draws for Asian club competition were made in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, on Tuesday and there are some intriging ties. The Asian Champions League is dominated by South Korean clubs who made up half of the eight teams remaining at this stage of the tournament. Therefore there was no country protection for those teams but there was protection for the two Saudi Arabia clubs who are still involved. Defending Asian champions Pohang Steelers will meet Iranians Zob Ahan, who recently finished their domestic league season as runners up. The one all-Korean tie of the round sees Seongnam Ilhwa Chunma, Asian champions in 1995-96, face off against Suwon Samsung Bluewings who won the competition in back-to-back years (2001 and 2002). The final Korean team Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors plays against Saudi Arabia’s Al Shabab whilst, in the only tie not involving Korean teams, Qatari champions Al Gharafa play against another team from Saudi Arabia, namely Al Hilal.

In the AFC Cup there was also country protection, a rule barring teams from the same country from meeting each other, for the clubs from Kuwait, Syria and Thailand all of whom had two teams each left standing. Last season’s losing finalists Al Karamah will hope to go one better this time and the Syrian side meet up with Thailand’s Muangthong United. Thai Port have a last eight meeting with Al Qadsia of Kuwaiti while the latter’s compatriots Kazma FC will meet Syrians Al-Ittihad who recently finished fourth in the 2009-10 Syrian League. The final tie sees current Vietnamese league leaders SHB Da Nang play against nine-time champions of Bahrain Al Riffa.

AFC CHAMPIONS LEAGUE QUARTER-FINAL DRAW (First leg home teams on left)

1. Al Hilal (Saudi Arabia) v Al Gharafa (Qatar)

2. Zob Ahan (Iran) v Pohang Steelers (South Korea)

3. Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors (South Korea) v Al Shabab (Saudi Arabia)

4. Seongnam Ilhwa Chunma (South Korea) v Suwon Samsung Bluewings (South Korea)

1st Leg: 15/09/10 2nd Leg: 22/09/10

AFC CUP QUARTER-FINAL DRAW (First leg home teams on left)

1. Al-Riffa (Bahrain) v SHB Da Nang (Vietnam)

2. Al Karamah (Syria) v Muangthong United (Thailand)

3. Thai Port (Thailand) v Al Qadsia (Kuwait)

4. Al-Ittihad (Syria) v Kazma FC (Kuwait)

1st Leg: 14/09/10 2nd Leg: 21/09/10

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