Ulsan Hyundai FC secure second AFC Champions League title

Junior Negrao scored twice as South Korea’s Ulsan Hyundai came from behind to win the AFC Champions League final with 2-1 win over Iran’s Persepolis in Doha.

Ulsan Hyundai rallied to an impressive comeback victory after Mehdi Abdi Qara gave Persepolis the lead, but Brazilian ace Junior Negrao scored in each half to hand his side their second Continental club title since 2012.

AFC President Shaikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa praised the South Koreans performance, saying “On behalf of the AFC and Asian football family, I would like to congratulate both Persepolis and Ulsan Hyundai for producing a memorable night of spectacular football.

“Ulsan Hyundai deserve our praise for showcasing outstanding quality and I would like to congratulate everyone, from the players, officials as well as the backroom staff, all of those working behind the scenes for their resilience and commitment.

“This has been a challenging year for everyone across the world of football, and the AFC is proud to have successfully and safely delivered the AFC Champions League 2020 for the benefit of our clubs and Member Associations.”

The AFC President also paid tribute to this year’s centralised host – the Qatar Football Association and the Qatar Government – and hailed the efforts of the medical team in Qatar. To mark the return of Asian football and the AFC Champions League 2020 in September, the AFC launched the #FootballForHeroes campaign paying homage to the front liners and healthcare professionals.

In addition to the #FootballForHeroes visuals taking their spots in strategic places across the stadiums, including during Saturday’s final, a special tribute message was also broadcasted live during all matches over the past three months.

The AFC President added: “On behalf of the Asian football family, I want to underline our gratitude once again to the Qatar Football Association, the Qatar Authorities and all our participating clubs. It was an incredible team effort that showcased the unity and solidarity of Asian football.

“I must also thank our broadcast partners, our loyal sponsors as well as the media and our passionate fans, so many of whom continue to be engaged in record numbers.

“And finally, but most importantly, to the medical team in Qatar, our doctors, and front liners as well as the delegation in Qatar. Our achievements would not have been possible without you and this success is a tribute to all of you who have shown great resolve and commitment.

“Today, we celebrate the best of Asian club football, but we also salute your remarkable spirit and sacrifice.”

In the individual awards, Yoon Bit-garam’s phenomenal form for Ulsan Hyundai FC saw the midfielder clinch the Most Valuable Player award while Al Nassr striker Abderrazak Hamdallah was crowned the 2020 AFC Champions League’s top scorer, finishing with seven goals in fewer total minutes throughout the competition ahead of Ulsan Hyundai FC front man Negrão who also completed his spectacular campaign with seven goals.

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