2021 AFC Cup Knockout Stage Finalised
The pathway to the 2021 AFC Cup Final was decided following the completion of the Knockout Stage draw in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on Wednesday.
The Knockout Stage virtual draw saw the participating clubs placed in two Pots – West Zone and Inter-Zone Play-off – based on their Zonal representations without any seeding or country protection.
With all the Knockout Stage matches changed to single-leg ties from the home-and-away format, the winners of the West Zonal Semi-Final between Muharraq Club of Bahrain and titleholders Al Ahed FC of Lebanon will host the Final against the winners of the Kuwait SC and Al Salt of Jordan Semi-Final. The Semi-Finals will be played on September 20 and 21.
The four semi-finalists were placed in the West Zone pot with the first ball drawn selected as host club for the West Zone Final scheduled for October 20. The West Zone champions will also host the AFC Cup Final on November 5.
Due to the cancellation of the ASEAN Zone matches, the three Zonal champions from the Central, South and East Zones were drawn into two pairings where one club received a bye to the Inter-Zone Final.
The champions of the Central Zone – to be decided between FC Nasaf of Uzbekistan and FC Ahal of Turkmenistan on August 25 – will host the Inter-Zone Final against the winners of the South Zone on September 22.
The Inter-Zone Semi-Final winners, who will host the final on October 20, will face East Zone champions Lee Man of Hong Kong in the regional decider.