2020 AFC Champions League
14–28 January 2020
10 February – 28 November 2020
|Teams||Competition proper: 32|
Total: Maximum of 53 (from Maximum of 24 associations)
The 2020 AFC Champions League will be the 39th edition of Asia's premier club football tournament organized by the Asian Football Confederation (AFC), and the 18th under the current AFC Champions League title.
Association team allocation
The 46 AFC member associations (excluding the associate member Northern Mariana Islands) are ranked based on their national team's and clubs' performance over the last four years in AFC competitions, with the allocation of slots for the 2019 and 2020 editions of the AFC club competitions determined by the 2017 AFC rankings (Entry Manual Article 2.3):
- The associations are split into two regions:
- West Region consists of the associations from the West Asian Football Federation (WAFF), the Central Asian Football Association (CAFA), and the South Asian Football Federation (SAFF).
- East Region consists of the associations from the ASEAN Football Federation (AFF) and the East Asian Football Federation (EAFF).
- In each region, there are four groups in the group stage, including a total of 12 direct slots, with the 4 remaining slots filled through play-offs.
- The top 12 associations in each region as per the AFC rankings are eligible to enter the AFC Champions League, as long as they fulfill the AFC Champions League criteria.
- The top six associations in each region get at least one direct slot in the group stage, while the remaining associations get only play-off slots (as well as AFC Cup group stage slots):
- The associations ranked 1st and 2nd each get three direct slots and one play-off slot.
- The associations ranked 3rd and 4th each get two direct slots and two play-off slots.
- The associations ranked 5th each get one direct slot and two play-off slots.
- The associations ranked 6th each get one direct slot and one play-off slot.
- The associations ranked 7th to 12th each get one play-off slot.
- The maximum number of slots for each association is one-third of the total number of eligible teams in the top division.
- If any association gives up its direct slots, they are redistributed to the highest eligible association, with each association limited to a maximum of three direct slots.
- If any association gives up its play-off slots, they are annulled and not redistributed to any other association.
For the 2020 AFC Champions League, the associations are allocated slots according to their association ranking which was published on 15 December 2017, which takes into account their performance in the AFC Champions League and the AFC Cup, as well as their national team's FIFA World Rankings, during the period between 2014 and 2017.
|Participation for 2019 AFC Champions League|
NOTE: The following slot allocation is provisional, assuming that all eligible associations enter the allocated number of teams based on the entry manual. The final slot allocation will be confirmed by the AFC by November/December 2019, based on the list of teams passing the club licensing requirements.
NOTE: The following list of participating teams is provisional. The final list of participating teams will be confirmed by the AFC by November/December 2019, based on the slot allocation finalised by the AFC Competitions Committee and the list of teams passing the club licensing requirements.
In the following table, the number of appearances and last appearance count only those since the 2002–03 season (including qualifying rounds), when the competition was rebranded as the AFC Champions League. Only teams assured of a place are displayed.
The schedule of the competition is as follows.
|Stage||Round||Draw date||First leg||Second leg|
|Preliminary stage||Preliminary round 1||No draw||14 January 2020|
|Preliminary round 2||21 January 2020|
|Play-off stage||Play-off round||28 January 2020|
|Group stage||Matchday 1||TBA November/December 2019||10–12 February 2020|
|Matchday 2||17–19 February 2020|
|Matchday 3||2–4 March 2020|
|Matchday 4||6–8 April 2020|
|Matchday 5||20–22 April 2020|
|Matchday 6||4–6 May 2020|
|Knockout stage||Round of 16||25–27 May 2020||15–17 June 2020|
|Quarter-finals||TBA June/July 2020||24–26 August 2020||14–16 September 2020|
|Semi-finals||29–30 September 2020||20–21 October 2020|
|Final||22 November 2020||28 November 2020|
- "Entry Manual: AFC Club Competitions 2017–2020" (PDF). AFC.
- "AFC Club Competitions Ranking (as of 15 December 2017)" (PDF). AFC.
- "AFC Club Competitions Ranking Mechanics (2017 version)" (PDF). AFC.
- "AFC Competitions Calendar 2020". AFC. 4 April 2018.
- AFC Champions League, the-AFC.com