Hà Nội FC won the National Cup on Sunday. The team are expected to compete in the AFC Champions League or AFC Cup next year. Photo tinmoi.vn
HÀ NỘI — The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) has changed the number and method of selecting teams to participate in the AFC Champions League and AFC Cup 2021, giving Việt Nam three slots to compete in the two continental tournaments.
A total of 54 teams will compete in the AFC Champions League, of which 32 teams will go straight to the group stage and the remaining 22 teams will compete in the playoff round.
The winners of the 2020 V.League 1 will go straight into the AFC Champions League group stage, meaning Việt Nam will be represented in Asai's top club competition for the first time in years.
Becamex Bình Dương and Nam Định both played in the group stage of the AFC Champions League in 2008. However, both teams finished bottom of their groups.
In 2015 and 2016, Hà Nội FC participated in the playoff round but they lost to South Korean. Becamex Bình Dương also reached the group stage in 2016, but again finished bottom of their group.
The AFC Champions League next year will be held from February 8 to November 27.
Meanwhile, in the AFC Cup 2021, Southeast Asia will have 10 teams playing the group stage and six teams competing in the playoff round. Of which Việt Nam, Malaysia and Singapore all have two teams entering the group stage.
The AFC Cup is scheduled to be held from February 8 to November 6.
Having a representative directly qualifying for the AFC Champions League group stage 2021 shows the progress Vietnamese football has made in recent years from the national team to the club level. — VNS