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Kuala Lumpur: After the latest round of FIFA World Cup Russia 2018 qualifiers brought to an end a busy five-month period of football, continental action takes a short break in the upcoming weeks.

So, what better time than now to kick off the-AFC.com’s new Asian Football Trivia segment - our weekly question-based series that allows you, the fans, to send us your questions on anything and everything related to Asian football?

Week one begins with three tricky in-house questions, and we invite you to follow suit and send us your queries via the AFC’s social media platforms in the coming days and weeks.


What has been the most successful shirt colour in the AFC Champions League final?

When Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors lifted the title in 2016, they did so in their strikingly green jersey which was, unsurprisingly, the first time a team wearing the colour has hoisted the continental trophy.

Looking back at previous finals, white was the lucky colour in the early years as Al Ain – in their white and purple away kit – were victorious in 2003 before Al Ittihad and Jeonbuk, also in their white second strips, were crowned champions in 2004 and 2006.

Two years later, another team in their lucky white away top, Gamba Osaka, lifted the title before Al Sadd’s 2011 success meant five of the first nine AFC Champions League finals had been won by teams wearing white.

Urawa Red Diamonds, in 2007, were the first side to win the trophy wearing red, before Pohang Steelers did likewise – in their red and black kit – two years later.

And success for Guangzhou Evergrande in 2013 and 2015, either side of Western Sydney Wanderers’ title-winning 2014 campaign – in red and black – means that, with five championships apiece, teams wearing red or white are more likely to enjoy continental success.

Good news for all eight remaining AFC Champions League contenders, who have at least one kit in red or white. Maybe they’re just the most common colours..


What’s the furthest distance a team has had to travel for an away game since the AFC Champions League and AFC Cup began?

As far as away days go, nowhere in the world rivals Asian football for distance and, when Australia joined the Asian Football Confederation in 2006, the journeys just got that little bit longer.

Arbil in Iraq to Jayapura in eastern Indonesia is a long old trek, as Arbil found out when they traveled to Persipura Jayapura in the 2011 AFC Cup quarter-finals. They probably considered the 10,768-kilometre one-way trip worth it considering a 2-1 win ensued, although the Indonesian outfit may have a different view after a second-leg defeat in northern Iraq meant a 3-1 aggregate reversal.

The grueling lengthy journeys in Asian club football became even more so after Australian clubs waltzed into the AFC Champions League in 2007. A year later, Brazilian legend Rivaldo would find himself on an 11,029-kilometre trip as Bunyodkor traveled from Tashkent to Adelaide in the semi-final first leg only to suffer a 3-0 defeat.

The return fixture in the Uzbek capital was won 1-0 by the hosts, but it was the Australians who prevailed before suffering a 5-0 aggregate defeat to Gamba Osaka in the final.

While those distances are mind-boggling just for a game of football, they remain well short of the furthest traveled in Asian club competition. That record was set in the 2014 final when Western Sydney faced off against Al Hilal.

 

The Saudi side flew 12,777 kilometres to lose 1-0 in Sydney, before the Australian debutants headed west to claim a 0-0 draw a week later and lift the title at the first attempt. No one can say they didn’t earn it.


What’s the fastest goal ever scored in the AFC Champions League?

Western Sydney make their third appearance in our inaugural Asian Football Trivia offering, this time because they conceded to Shanghai SIPG’s Wu Lei after 21 seconds in May this year. That did leave them plenty of time to recover, which is exactly what they did by equalising soon after and running out 3-2 winners.

Wu’s strike wasn’t even the fastest goal of the 2017 AFC Champions League group stage, though, as Salamat Kutibaev netted on 17 seconds for Lokomotiv against Al Ahli of the United Arab Emirates three months earlier in a 2-1 victory. The result mattered little, with Emiratis ultimately topping the group and the Uzbek side propping up the pile.

But when it comes to the fastest goal ever scored in the continental competition, that accolade goes to Sebastian Soria, who netted after just seven seconds in Lekhwiya’s 2-2 draw at Pakhtakor in April 2013. The devastating break from kick-off stunned the hosts and it is likely the current Al Rayyan man will hold on to the record for some time to come.

Photo: Lagardère Sports