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AFC Cup: List of clubs who have won the title

Published at :May 5, 2024 at 11:38 PM
Modified at :May 5, 2024 at 11:38 PM
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(Courtesy : AFC)

Manav Chowdhury

The ultimate edition of the AFC Cup has been won by Australian side Central Coast Mariners!

The AFC Cup is an annual continental club football competition organised by the Asian Football Confederation (AFC). It is a competition played between teams that do not receive direct qualifying places in the AFC Champions League.

The tournament began in 2004 as a second-tier competition to the AFC Champions League. Distribution of slots for both the AFC Cup and the AFC Champions League, the top-tier tournaments in Asia, is done based on the AFC Club Competitions Rankings, which is determined by the level of club football played within a particular country.

The basic distinction between qualifying for the AFC Cup and the AFC Champions League is also determined by the level of football played within the country. For example, countries with strong football leagues like Japan, South Korea and Qatar have had little to no participation in the AFC Cup history. Al-Kuwait SC and Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya are the most successful clubs 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. The tournament has been dominated by clubs from West Asia, with Uzbek side FC Nasaf (2011) and Malaysian side Johor Darul Ta’zim (2015) emerging as winners from outside that region. Oman’s Al Seeb are the reigning AFC Cup champions after defeating Kuala Lumpur City of Malaysia in the 2022 final. However, they will not be defending their title after failing to qualify for the 2023 season.

Here’s a look at the clubs that have etched their names on the trophy:

2004Al-Jaish (Syria)Al Wahda (Syria)
2005Al-Faisaly (Jordan)Nejmeh (Lebanon)
2006Al-Faisaly (Jordan)Al-Muharraq (Bahrain)
2007Shabab Al-Ordon (Jordan)Al-Faisaly (Jordan)
2008Al-Muharraq (Bahrain)Safa (Lebanon)
2009Al-Kuwait (Kuwait)Al-Karamah (Syria)
2010Al-Ittihad SC Aleppo (Syria)Al-Qadsia (Kuwait)
2011FC Nasaf (Uzbekistan)Al Kuwait (Kuwait)
2012Al-Kuwait (Kuwait)Erbil (Iraq)
2013Al-Kuwait (Kuwait)Al-Qadisa (Kuwait)
2014Al-Qadsia (Kuwait)Erbil (Iraq)
2015Johor Darul Ta’zim (Malaysia)Istikol (Tajikistan)
2016Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya (Iraq)Bengaluru FC (India)
2017Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya (Iraq)Istikol (Tajikistan)
2018Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya (Iraq)Altyn Asyr (Turkmenistan)
2019Al-Ahed (Lebanon)April 25 (North Korea)
2021Al-Muharraq (Bahrain)FC Nasaf (Uzbekistan)
2022Al-Seeb (Oman)Kuala Lumpur City (Malaysia)
2023Central Coast mariners (Australia)Al Ahed (Lebanon)

The AFC Cup 2023 is also the final season of the competition in its current form, after which it will be discontinued. The AFC Champions League 2 is set to be the new second-tier annual continental football competition in Asia starting from the 2024-25 season.

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