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Morais eyes AFC Champions League title to complete historic treble with Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors


Jeonju: Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors head coach Jose Morais has challenged his players to win the 2020 AFC Champions League for a historic treble after the Korea Republic side added the FA Cup to the K League title on Sunday.

Jeonbuk came from behind to defeat Ulsan Hyundai 2-1 in Sunday's FA Cup final second leg to win 3-2 on aggregate and Morais, who tasted treble glory when he was part of Jose Mourinho's all conquering Inter Milan side of 2009-10, wants that heady feeling again.

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"When I look back on that 2009-2010 season, accomplishing a treble is extremely difficult," Morais said to local media. "And I'd like to experience that joy once again."

No Korean side has achieved the treble but Jeonbuk are certainly a team in form, having held their nerves to see off Ulsan's stiff challenge in the K League and FA Cup final to emerge triumphant.

Morais said he spoke with Mourinho after clinching the K League 1 title, and that he still has so much respect for his old boss.

"If I can accomplish a treble all by myself this time, I think Mourinho will be really proud," Morais said. "I am always trying to remember all the lessons he taught me. We're still talking to each other and trying to make each other better."

Morais said his players won't feel any added pressure despite knowing winning the 2020 AFC Champions League would mean creating more history.

The 2020 K League title was a record-breaking eighth for Jeonbuk while the domestic double was their first.

Jeonbuk, having won the AFC Champions League in 2006 and 2016, can make it a hat-trick of continental titles - which Morais believes his can achieve.

"I think we've been winning so much this year because winning is fun," Morais said. "We have enough time before we head over to Qatar. And we'll try to keep having fun at the tournament."

Group H - MD3: Sydney FC 2-2 Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors FC

The Korean champions, however, have some work to do as they only registered one point from their opening two matches, with Japan's Yokohama F. Marinos edging them 2-1 and Sydney FC holding them to a 2-2 draw before the tournament was halted in March by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Jeonbuk will restart their Group H campaign against China PR's Shanghai SIPG on November 22.

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