List of AFC Champions League Winners


The AFC Champions League, widely known as the Asian Champions League, is an annual continental club football competition that was established in 2002. The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) is the sanctioning body of the Asian Champions League which is the predecessor of the Asian Club Championship which was formed in 1967.

Club Hapoel Tel Aviv became the first Asian Champions League title holder after defeating Selangor FA and Israel was the first country to host the 1st edition of the AFC Champions League. The league established its popularity, because of which various countries took turns to host the AFC Champions League.

The Comeback of the AFC Champions League

The 1972 edition had to be canceled due to political reasons and Israel teams were expelled from the confederation. In 1985, Asia’s premier tournament made its return, with South Korea hosting the season. Since 2009 edition, a total of 32 clubs compete in the round-robin group stage of the competition. The club winning the AFC Champions League will qualify for the FIFA Club World Cup.

Which Team has Won the AFC Champions League the most?

The South Korean professional football club Pohang Steelers is the most successful club in the competition, with a total of three titles. The Saudi Arabian professional club Al-Hilal holds the most number of runners-up (4 times).

Kashima Antlers, the Japanese professional association football club is the reigning champion of the 2018 AFC Champions League. It was their first win of the Asian League after defeating Persepolis in the finals.

The table below shows the list of AFC Champions League winners since the inception of the league in 1967.

Complete list of the AFC Champions League Winners

Though the number of teams entering the Champions League has varied, the qualifying format has remained the same. Most of the clubs from the East Asian country, South Korea have been qualified for the AFC Champions League (11 times), whereas the second East Asian country to produce professional teams that got qualified for the AFC Champions League is Japan (7 times).

AFC Champions League Winners List

11967IsraelHapoel Tel Aviv
21969IsraelMaccabi Tel Aviv
31970IranTaj Club
41971IsraelMaccabi Tel Aviv
61985–86South KoreaDaewoo Royals
71986JapanFurukawa Electric
81987JapanYomiuri FC
101989–90ChinaLiaoning FC
111990–91IranEsteghlal Tehran
121991Saudi ArabiaAl-Hilal
131992–93IranPAS Tehran
141993–94ThailandThai Farmers Bank
151994–95ThailandThai Farmers Bank
161995South KoreaIlhwa Chunma
171996–97South KoreaPohang Steelers
181997–98South KoreaPohang Steelers
191998–99JapanJúbilo Iwata
201999–00Saudi ArabiaAl-Hilal
212000–01South KoreaSuwon Samsung Bluewings
222001–02South KoreaSuwon Samsung Bluewings
232002–03United Arab EmiratesAl Ain
242004Saudi ArabiaAl-Ittihad
252005Saudi ArabiaAl-Ittihad
262006South KoreaJeonbuk Hyundai Motors
272007JapanUrawa Red Diamonds
282008JapanGamba Osaka
292009South KoreaPohang Steelers
302010South KoreaSeongnam Ilhwa Chunma
322012South KoreaUlsan Hyundai
332013ChinaGuangzhou Evergrande
342014AustraliaWestern Sydney Wanderers
352015ChinaGuangzhou Evergrande
362016South KoreaJeonbuk Hyundai Motors
372017JapanUrawa Red Diamonds
382018JapanKashima Antlers


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