2021 AFC Champions League Quarter-finals: Meet the teams
Kuala Lumpur: The race for the 2021 AFC Champions League title is heating up as the eight remaining sides return for the quarter-finals in Saudi Arabia and Korea Republic over the weekend.
On Saturday at Riyadh's King Saud University Stadium, Al Hilal SFC take on Persepolis FC and Al Nassr go up against Al Wahda FSCC. A day later at Jeonju World Cup Stadium, Pohang Steelers meet Nagoya Grampus before defending champions Ulsan Hyundai face off with Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors.
With five countries represented, four former winners still in the mix and a number of the finest players in Asia, the-AFC.com takes a closer look at the teams involved.
2021 AFC Champions League Quarter-Finals (East): Players in Form
Kuala Lumpur: Just eight teams remain in the hunt for the 2021 AFC Champions League title as Asia's premier club competition returns for the quarter-finals over the weekend.
In East Asia, defending champions Ulsan Hyundai are joined by Korean rivals and former winners Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors and Pohang Steelers, while Japan's Nagoya Grampus return to the last eight for the first time since 2009.
With Ulsan taking on Jeonbuk and Pohang meeting Nagoya, both at Jeonju World Cup Stadium on Sunday, the-AFC.com shines the spotlight on four players who could make the difference.
2021 AFC Champions League Quarter-finals: Facts and Stats
Kuala Lumpur: The 2021 AFC Champions League quarter-finals on Saturday and Sunday promise to be thrilling affairs.
Four previous winners, a runners-up from two of the three most recent editions and and a trio of teams looking to play in the final for the first time remain in the running to emerge the 2021 champions.
Join the-AFC.com as we take a look at some interesting facts and stats ahead of the 2021 AFC Champions League quarter-finals.
Nagoya confidence high ahead of 2021 AFC Champions League quarter-final, says Inagaki
Jeonju: Sho Inagaki has revealed that Nagoya Grampus are travelling to Korea Republic full of belief ahead of their first appearance in the AFC Champions League quarter-finals since 2009.
Nagoya advanced to the last eight after seeing off K League 1 side Daegu FC 4-2 in the Round of 16, and they face Korean opposition once more on Sunday when they take on three-time continental champions Pohang Steelers at Jeonju World Cup Stadium.
The sides previously met in the group stage, when Nagoya picked up a win and a draw en route to finishing on top of the standings. They now go into their third meeting with Pohang on a high after Inagaki's goal against FC Tokyo on Sunday secured a place in the 2021 J.League Cup final.
Pohang's Lee Seung-mo 'not satisfied' with 2021 AFC Champions League quarter-final place
Jeonju: When Lee Seung-mo netted the only goal of the game to defeat Cerezo Osaka in the 2021 AFC Champions League last 16, he secured Pohang Steelers a place in the quarter-finals for the first time since 2014, but the 23-year-old has admitted he wants much more.
Lee's close-range effort midway through the first half ensured a continental giant, who have been champions of Asia three times, finally returned to the latter stages of the tournament after a seven-year hiatus and kept Pohang's dreams of winning a first AFC Champions League title since 2009 alive.
Having successfully navigated the Round of 16 in Japan, Pohang will again face J1 League opposition in the quarter-finals, but this time they will do so in their homeland as they take on Nagoya Grampus at Jeonju World Cup Stadium on Sunday.
Al Hilal's Jang dreams of repeating AFC Champions League glory
Riyadh: Two years into his time at Saudi Arabia’s Al Hilal SFC, Korea Republic defender Jang Hyun-soo is dreaming of a second AFC Champions League title as his side prepare to face Persepolis FC in the quarter-finals.
The former Korea Republic international arrived in Riyadh from Tokyo FC back in 2019, having never won silverware at club level, and within months he had picked up the most coveted trophy in Asian football, helping Al Hilal to the AFC Champions League title after a 3-0 aggregate triumph over Urawa Red Diamonds of Japan, but Jang is not satisfied yet as he dreams of a repeat of that success.
Vote for AFC Asian Qualifiers - Road to Qatar Player of the Week
Kuala Lumpur: After a thrilling October window the AFC Asian Qualifiers – Road to Qatar is shaping up as one of the best qualification races in memory, and Asia’s galaxy of stars delivered no shortage of quality over the past week.
Big names came to the fore for Islamic Republic, Korea Republic, Syria and China PR, while fresh-faced youngsters left their mark for Japan, Saudi Arabia and Vietnam, with Asia’s Qatar 2022 picture beginning to take shape.
After 12 matches and 38 goals, we’ve picked out 10 outstanding performers from the week that was. Study our list of contenders and cast your vote.