Kuala Lumpur : The AFC Champions League 2022 Group Stage in west zone centralised matches will be held in Saudi Arabia from 7-27 April, subject to ratification by the AFC Executive Committee of the AFC Competitions Committee’s decision regarding the Hosting of Centralised Matches in the Group Stage.
Four-time Continental club champions Al Hilal SFC will begin their title defence in the Saudi Arabian capital, Riyadh, where the 17-time Saudi Pro League winners will face Group A contenders Tajikistan’s FC Istiklol, Qatar’s Al Rayyan SC as well as the winners of the Playoff Stage match between Sharjah from the United Arab Emirates and Iraqi side Al Zawraa Club.
Similarly, Riyadh will also be the host city for the matches in Group B, featuring this year’s debutants Mumbai City from India, UAE’s Al Jazira, Saudi Arabia’s Al Shabab and three-time AFC Cup winners Air Force Club of Iraq.
Group C, which will be headlined by Iranian side Foolad Khouzestan FC and 2015 finalists Shabab Al Ahli Dubai, Qatar’s Al Gharafa and Ahal FC of Turkmenistan – the first ever Turkmen representative in the AFC Champions League Group Stage – will be held in Jeddah.
Meanwhile, just northwest of Riyadh, Buraidah will provide the stage for Group D, which includes the Islamic Republic of Iran’s Sepahan FC, who reached the final of the 2007 edition, Qatar’s Al Duhail SC, two-time Semi-finalists Pakhtakor of Uzbekistan and the winners of the Playoff Stage tie between Al Taawoun FC from Saudi Arabia and Syrian side Al Jaish.
Further, the AFC Competitions Committee extended the 2016 Decision, and this has subsequently been submitted to the AFC Executive Committee for ratification.
The single round Knockout Stage matches for the AFC Champions League 2022™ (West) will be held from February 3 to 10, 2023, with the Round of 16 scheduled for February 3 and 4, before the Quarter-finals are held on February 7 and the Semi-finals taking place on February 10, with the coveted Final to be staged over two legs on February 19 and 26, 2023.
The centralised host nations for the AFC Champions League 2022™ (East) Group Stage matches were finalised on February 16, 2022.
Credit Photo : The-AFC.com