Tehran Times - According to the latest Asian Football Confederation (AFC) club competitions ranking, Iran will have two direct slots in the group stage and two others in the preliminary rounds for the next season of the AFC Champions League.
The AFC Club Competitions Ranking is a ranking system launched by the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) in 2014. The ranking is based on the results of teams participating in the last four years of the AFC Champions League and the AFC Cup, as well as the member associations' FIFA ranking. The ranking is used for example to decide who play who in the Asian Champions League preliminary rounds.
The two top member associations in both East and West zones of Asia get three direct slots in the group stage of the AFC Champions League plus one slot in the play-off rounds of the competition which will have 40 clubs in 2021, with an increase from the previous 32.
Iran, dropping down one place, stand 6th overall and third in West Zone with 81.724 total points in the latest club competitions ranking issued by AFC. Qatar and Saudi Arabia ranked first and second in West Asia, respectively.
The 2021 AFC Champions League will be the 40th edition of Asia's premier club football tournament organized by the AFC, and the 19th under the current AFC Champions League (ACL) title. The 47 AFC member associations are ranked based on their clubs' performance over the last four years in AFC competitions (their national team's FIFA World Rankings no longer considered).
Persian Golf Pro League champions and Hazfi Cup winners will take Iran’s two direct slots in group stages of the AFC Champions League and the second and third teams represent Iran in the preliminary rounds of the ACL.
Persepolis, Esteghlal, Sepahan, and Shahr Khodro are four Iranian teams competing in the group stage of the current season of ACL.
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