AFC Cup

The AFC Cup is an annual continental club football competition organised by the Asian Football Confederation (AFC). Under its current rules, the competition is played primarily between clubs from nations that did not receive direct qualifying slots in the top-tier AFC Champions League, based on the AFC Club Competitions Ranking.

AFC Cup
Founded2004 (2004)
RegionAsia (AFC)
Number of teams36
Related competitionsAFC Champions League
Current champions Al-Ahed (1st title)
Most successful club(s) Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya
Al-Kuwait
(3 titles each)
WebsiteOfficial website
2020 AFC Cup

Al-Kuwait and Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya are the most successful club in the competition's history, having won three titles each. Clubs from Kuwait have won four titles, making them the most successful nation in the competition. Ever since the inauguration of the competition in 2004, the finalists of each edition have been dominated by clubs from West Asia until 2015 when the Malaysian team Johor Darul Ta'zim from East Asia became one of the finalists and became champions. Al-Ahed are the current champions after defeating April 25 in the 2019 final.

History

The AFC Cup began in 2004 as a second tier competition to relate back to the AFC Champions League as 14 countries that had developing status competed in the first competition with 18 teams being nominated. Group A, B, C had West and Central Asian teams while the other two groups had east and South East Asia. The winners and three runners-up would then head to the knock-out stage where it was a random draw in who was going to play. Al-Jaish took the first AFC Cup after they defeated fellow Syrian opponents Al-Wahda on away goals.

In 2005, 18 teams competed from nine nations with the nations still being allowed to choose from one or two teams entering. After Syrian teams left the AFC Cup to try at the Champions League for four years, Al-Faisaly defeated Nejmeh in the final. With it, Jordanian teams would win the next two AFC Cup seasons with Bahrain joining the league while Bangladesh was relegated to the AFC President's Cup until the tournament's abolition in 2014.

Al-Muharraq would break the trend in 2008 as they competed in the last two-legged final before it headed back into a one-leg system which still runs to this day.

Format

Some changes were applied in terms of teams and format for the 2017 AFC Cup. A total of 36 teams participate in the group stage (12 each from West Asia and ASEAN, and 4 each from East Asia, Central Asia, and South Asia). The final will be played as a one-off match.

Allocation

Teams from 27 AFC countries have reached the group stage of the AFC Cup. The allocation of those teams by member country is listed below; asterisks represent occasions where at least one team was eliminated in qualification for the group stage. 34 AFC countries have had teams participate in qualification (including Brunei and Timor-Leste who will make their debuts in 2020), those who have not reached the group stage but have only played in qualification are not bolded.

Associations Spots
2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020
East
Chinese Taipei 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0* 1 1
Guam 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0* 0 0
Hong Kong 1 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 0 0 2
Macau 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0* 0 1 0
Mongolia 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0* 1 0* 0*
North Korea 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 2 1*
Total 1 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 3 4 4 4
ASEAN
Brunei 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Cambodia 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1* 1 1
Indonesia 0 0 0 0 0 1 2 2 1 2 2 2 0 0 2 2
Laos 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 0* 0* 1
Malaysia 2 2 2 2 2 2 1 0 2 2 2 2 2 2 1 0
Myanmar 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2
Philippines 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1* 2 2 2 2
Singapore 2 2 2 2 2 1 1 1 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2
Thailand 0 0 0 1 0 2 2 2 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Timor-Leste 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Vietnam 0 0 0 1 0 2 2 2 2 2 2 0 0 2 2 2
Total 4 4 4 6 4 8 8 7 10 10 10 10 9 11 12 12 12
South
Bangladesh 1 2 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0* 1 1* 1* 1
Bhutan 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0* 0* 0* 0*
India 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2
Maldives 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 1* 2 2 2 2 1* 1* 0
Nepal 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0* 0 0* 0 1
Pakistan 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0* 0 0 0
Sri Lanka 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0* 0 0*
Total 5 6 6 4 4 4 4 4 3 4 4 4 5 4 4 4 4
Central
Afghanistan 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0* 0 0
Kyrgyzstan 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0* 0* 2 1* 1*
Tajikistan 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 1 1* 1* 1* 1* 2
Turkmenistan 2 2 2 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1* 1* 1* 2 1*
Uzbekistan 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 2 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Total 2 2 2 2 0 1 1 2 1 2 2 2 2 4 4 4 4
West
Bahrain 0 0 1 1 2 2 1 0 0 1 2 2 2 2 2 2
Iraq 0 0 0 0 0 2 0 3 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 0
Jordan 0 2 2 3 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2
Kuwait 0 0 0 0 0 2 3 3 3 2 2 2 0 0 0 2
Lebanon 2 2 2 2 2 3 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2
Oman 1 0 1 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 1* 2 2 2 1*
Palestine 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0* 1* 2 0* 0* 1
Qatar 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Saudi Arabia 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Syria 2 0 0 0 0 2 3 3 2 1* 2 2 2 2 2 2
Yemen 1 0 0 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 0* 0* 0 0 0 0
Total 6 4 6 10 10 17 16 17 16 14 14 14 14 12 12 12 12
Total
Finals 18 18 20 24 20 32 31 32 32 32 32 32 32 34 36 36 36
Qualifying 18 18 20 24 20 32 31 32 33 33 34 41 40 50 44 43

Prize money

The prize money for the 2020 AFC Cup:[1]

Phase Purse (USD) Travel subsidy
(per match)
Preliminary stage N/A $40,000
Play-offs N/A $40,000
Group stage N/A $40,000
Knockout stage Zonal champions: $100,000 $40,000
Final Champions: $1.5 million
Runners-up: $750,000
$40,000

Results and statistics

Finals

List of AFC Cup finals
Year Nation Home team Score Away team Nation Venue Attendance
2004  Syria Al-Wahda 2–3 Al-Jaish  Syria Abbasiyyin Stadium, Damascus
 Syria Al-Jaish 0–1 Al-Wahda  Syria Abbasiyyin Stadium, Damascus
Aggregate 3–3, Al-Jaish won on away goals
2005  Jordan Al-Faisaly 1–0 Nejmeh  Lebanon Amman International Stadium, Amman
 Lebanon Nejmeh 2–3 Al-Faisaly  Jordan Rafic El-Hariri Stadium, Beirut
Al-Faisaly won 4–2 on aggregate
2006  Jordan Al-Faisaly 3–0 Al-Muharraq  Bahrain Amman International Stadium, Amman 7,000
 Bahrain Al-Muharraq 4–2 Al-Faisaly  Jordan Bahrain National Stadium, Riffa 3,000
Al-Faisaly won 5–4 on aggregate
2007  Jordan Al-Faisaly 0–1 Shabab Al-Ordon  Jordan Amman International Stadium, Amman 5,500
 Jordan Shabab Al-Ordon 1–1 Al-Faisaly  Jordan Amman International Stadium, Amman 7,500
Shabab Al-Ordon won 2–1 on aggregate
2008  Bahrain Al-Muharraq 5–1 Safa  Lebanon Bahrain National Stadium, Riffa 6,000
 Lebanon Safa 4–5 Al-Muharraq  Bahrain Sports City Stadium, Beirut 2,000
Al-Muharraq won 10–5 on aggregate
Year Nation of Winners Winners Score Runners-up Nation Venue Attendance
2009  Kuwait Al-Kuwait 2–1 Al-Karamah  Syria Al Kuwait Sports Club Stadium, Kuwait City 17,400
2010  Syria Al-Ittihad 1–1 (aet)
(4–2 p)
Al-Qadsia  Kuwait Jaber International Stadium, Kuwait City 58,604
2011  Uzbekistan FC Nasaf 2–1 Al-Kuwait  Kuwait Markaziy Stadium, Qarshi 15,753
2012  Kuwait Al-Kuwait 4–0 Erbil  Iraq Franso Hariri Stadium, Erbil 30,000
2013  Kuwait Al-Kuwait 2–0 Al-Qadsia  Kuwait Al-Sadaqua Walsalam Stadium, Kuwait City 10,000
2014  Kuwait Al-Qadsia 0–0 (aet)
(4–2 p)
Erbil  Iraq Maktoum Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Stadium, Dubai 5,240
2015  Malaysia Johor Darul Ta'zim 1–0 Istiklol  Tajikistan Pamir Stadium, Dushanbe 18,000
2016  Iraq Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya 1–0 Bengaluru  India Suheim Bin Hamad Stadium, Doha 5,806
2017  Iraq Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya 1–0 Istiklol  Tajikistan Hisor Central Stadium, Hisor 20,000
2018  Iraq Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya 2–0 Altyn Asyr  Turkmenistan Basra Sports City, Basra 24,665
2019  Lebanon Al-Ahed 1–0 April 25  North Korea Kuala Lumpur Stadium, Kuala Lumpur 500

Performance by clubs

Performances in the AFC Cup finals by club
Club Winners Runners-up Years won Years runners-up
Al-Kuwait 3 1 2009, 2012, 2013 2011
Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya 3 0 2016, 2017, 2018
Al-Faisaly 2 1 2005, 2006 2007
Al-Qadsia 1 2 2014 2010, 2013
Al-Muharraq 1 1 2008 2006
Al-Jaish 1 0 2004
Shabab Al-Ordon 1 0 2007
Al-Ittihad 1 0 2010
Nasaf Qarshi 1 0 2011
Johor Darul Ta'zim 1 0 2015
Al-Ahed 1 0 2019
Erbil 0 2 2012, 2014
Istiklol 0 2 2015, 2017
Al-Wahda 0 1 2004
Nejmeh 0 1 2005
Safa 0 1 2008
Al-Karamah 0 1 2009
Bengaluru 0 1 2016
Altyn Asyr 0 1 2018
April 25 0 1 2019

Performance by nations

Nation Winners Runners-up
 Kuwait 4 3
 Iraq 3 2
 Jordan 3 1
 Syria 2 2
 Lebanon 1 2
 Bahrain 1 1
 Malaysia 1
 Uzbekistan 1
 Tajikistan 2
 India 1
 Turkmenistan 1
 North Korea 1

Top scorers

YearFootballerClubGoals
2004 Indra Sahdan Daud Home United 7
Egmar Goncalves Home United
2005 Mo'ayyad Salim Al-Faisaly9
2006 Mahmoud Shelbaieh Al-Wehdat8
2007 Odai Al Saify Shabab Al-Ordun 5
Mohammed Ghaddar Nejmeh
2008 Rico Al-Muharraq 19
2009 Robert Akaruye Busaiteen 8
Mohamad Hamwi Al-Karamah
Jehad Al Hussain Al-Kuwait
Huỳnh Kesley Alves Bình Dương
2010 Afonso Alves Al-Rayyan9
2011 Ivan Bošković Nasaf Qarshi 10
2012 Amjad Radhi Erbil 9
Raja Rafe Al-Shorta
2013 Issam Jemâa Al-Kuwait 16
2014 Juan Belencoso Kitchee 11
2015 Daniel McBreen South China 8
Riste Naumov Ayeyawady United
2016 Hammadi Ahmed Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya 16
2017 Kim Yu-song April 25 9
2018 An Il-bom April 25 12
2019 Bienve Marañón Ceres–Negros 10

Winning coaches

YearClubCoach
2004 Al-Jaish Costică Ștefănescu
2005 Al-Faisaly Branko Smiljanić
2006 Al-Faisaly Adnan Hamad
2007 Shabab Al-Ordon Nizar Mahrous
2008 Al-Muharraq Salman Sharida
2009 Al-Kuwait Mohamad Abdulla
2010 Al-Ittihad Valeriu Tița
2011 Nasaf Qarshi Anatoliy Demyanenko
2012 Al-Kuwait Marin Ion
2013 Al-Kuwait Marin Ion
2014 Al-Qadsia Antonio Puche
2015 Johor Darul Ta'zim Mario Gomez
2016 Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya Basim Qasim
2017 Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya Hussam Al Sayed
2018 Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya Basim Qasim
2019 Al-Ahed Bassem Marmar

All-time top goalscorers

As of 4 November 2019
FootballerClubsGoals
Aleksandar Đurić Geylang United, Singapore Armed Forces, Tampines Rovers
32
Amjad Radhi Erbil SC, Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya
32
Rico Al-Muharraq, Al-Riffa, Al-Hidd
32
Mahmoud Shelbaieh Al-Wehdat
31
Bader Al-Mutawa Qadsia SC
30
Bienvenido Marañón Ceres–Negros
30
Ali Ashfaq Club Valencia, New Radiant, VB Sports Club
29

Marketing

Sponsorship

Like the AFC Champions League, the AFC Cup is sponsored by a group of multinational corporations, in contrast to the single main sponsor typically found in national top-flight leagues.

The tournament's current main sponsors are:

See also

References

  1. AFC Cup 2020 Competition Regulations. Asian Football Confederatopm. p. 69. Retrieved 11 December 2019.
  2. "AFC Cup League". Archived from the original on 27 February 2013. Retrieved 26 February 2013.
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