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Ulsan edge Persepolis to claim Asian crown https://www.fifa.com/clubworldcup/news/ulsan-edge-persepolis-to-claim-asian-crown
376682d0-b182-49ca-a746-037a8ecde13b
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<ul>
<li><strong>Ulsan come from behind to prevail over Persepolis 2-1</strong></li>
<li><strong>K-League side win the Asian Champions League for second time in their history</strong></li>
<li><strong>Ulsan to represent Asia at FIFA Club World Cup Qatar 2020™</strong></li>
</ul>

<p>Korea Republic’s Ulsan Hyundai won the 2020 AFC Champions League on Saturday, overcoming an early setback to defeat Iranian side Persepolis 2-1. Brazilian Junior Negrao scored both of his team’s goals, helping Ulsan to secure the Asian title for the second time in their history, after they previously emerged victorious in 2012.</p>

<p>With this victory, Ulsan made amends for some of the domestic mishaps they have suffered over the past couple of seasons, having finished as runners-up in the last two Korean title races and in this year’s Korean Cup final. Today’s continental achievement more than makes up for it.</p>

<p>Consequently, Ulsan will represent Asia in the FIFA Club World Cup Qatar 2020™, which will be held in Qatar from 1 to 11 February 2021. The South Koreans could potentially face off against footballing giants such as European champions Bayern Munich and Egypt’s Al Ahly.</p>

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<blockquote class=”twitter-tweet” data-lang=”en” readability=”5.9916317991632″><p lang=”en” dir=”ltr”>HIGHLIGHTS | ?? Persepolis FC 1-2 Ulsan Hyundai ??</p><p>? A Junior Negrao brace crowns Ulsan Hyundai Champions of Asia for the second time! <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/ACLFinal?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#ACLFinal</a> | <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/ACL2020?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#ACL2020</a> <a href=”https://t.co/cyBswmOy8z”>pic.twitter.com/cyBswmOy8z</a></p>— #ACLFinal (@TheAFCCL) <a href=”https://twitter.com/TheAFCCL/status/1340310617589129216?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>December 19, 2020</a></blockquote>

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<h4><strong>AFC Champions League Final</strong></h4>

<p>Persepolis 1-2 Ulsan, Al Janoub Stadium, Qatar</p>

<h4><strong>Goals</strong>:</h4>

<p>Mehdi Abdi (45’) for Persepolis</p>

<p>Junior Negrao (45’+4) (55’, pen) for Ulsan</p>

<h4><strong>The game</strong></h4>

<p>The Iranians started the match strongly, and almost opened the scoring when Milad Sarlak sent in a cross that just evaded Mehdi Abdi, depriving Persepolis of a valuable opportunity. Ulsan responded well, Yoon Bitgaram striking the left-hand post with a powerful shot at the conclusion of a brilliant attack.</p>

<p>Persepolis managed to open the scoring when Abdi drove forward and fired home from just inside the box (45’). Just before half-time, Ulsan won a penalty: Negrao’s initial effort was saved, but the composed No9 stroked home the rebound to level the score.</p>

<p>The South Korean side began the second half as they had ended the first, earning another penalty after a handball in the area. This time, Negrao made no mistake at the first attempt (55’). The Iranians pushed hard to get back in the game and squandered several viable opportunities, but Ulsan’s defence held firm, and the game ended 2-1.</p>

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<h3 class=”d3-o-media-object__title fi-o-media-object__title”>Ulsan pose for a photo before the AFC Champions League final</h3>

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<p class=”d3-o-media-object__date fi-o-media-object__date”>19 Dec 2020</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__summary fi-o-media-object__summary”>AL WAKRAH, QATAR – DECEMBER 19: Ulsan Hyundai’s players pose for photo before the AFC Champions League final between Persepolis and Ulsan Hyundai at the Al Janoub Stadium on December 19, 2020 in Al Wakrah, Qatar. (Photo by Mohamed Farag/Getty Images)</p>
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<h3 class=”d3-o-media-object__title fi-o-media-object__title”>Persepolis huddle ahead of the AFC Champions League final</h3>

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<p class=”d3-o-media-object__date fi-o-media-object__date”>19 Dec 2020</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__summary fi-o-media-object__summary”>AL WAKRAH, QATAR – DECEMBER 19: Persepolis players huddle ahead of the AFC Champions League final between Persepolis and Ulsan Hyundai at the Al Janoub Stadium on December 19, 2020 in Al Wakrah, Qatar. (Photo by Mohamed Farag/Getty Images)</p>
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<h3 class=”d3-o-media-object__title fi-o-media-object__title”>A Persepolis fan holds up a flag before kick-off of the AFC Champions League final</h3>

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<p class=”d3-o-media-object__date fi-o-media-object__date”>19 Dec 2020</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__summary fi-o-media-object__summary”>AL WAKRAH, QATAR – DECEMBER 19: Persepolis’s fan during the AFC Champions League final between Persepolis and Ulsan Hyundai at the Al Janoub Stadium on December 19, 2020 in Al Wakrah, Qatar. (Photo by Mohamed Farag/Getty Images)</p>
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<h3 class=”d3-o-media-object__title fi-o-media-object__title”>Sin Jinho of Ulsan during the AFC Champions League final</h3>

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<p class=”d3-o-media-object__date fi-o-media-object__date”>19 Dec 2020</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__summary fi-o-media-object__summary”>AL WAKRAH, QATAR – DECEMBER 19: Sin Jin Ho of Ulsan Hyundai during the AFC Champions League final between Persepolis and Ulsan Hyundai at the Al Janoub Stadium on December 19, 2020 in Al Wakrah, Qatar. (Photo by Mohamed Farag/Getty Images)</p>
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<h3 class=”d3-o-media-object__title fi-o-media-object__title”>Mehdi Abdi of Persepolis celebrates with his team-mates</h3>

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<p class=”d3-o-media-object__date fi-o-media-object__date”>19 Dec 2020</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__summary fi-o-media-object__summary”>AL WAKRAH, QATAR – DECEMBER 19: Mehdi Abdi of Persepolis celebrates with his teammates after scoring during the AFC Champions League final between Persepolis and Ulsan Hyundai at the Al Janoub Stadium on December 19, 2020 in Al Wakrah, Qatar. (Photo by Simon Holmes/Getty Images)</p>
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<h3 class=”d3-o-media-object__title fi-o-media-object__title”>Persepolis’ forward Mehdi Abdi Qara (C) celebrates with his team after scoring during the AFC Champions League final&nbsp;</h3>

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<p class=”d3-o-media-object__date fi-o-media-object__date”>19 Dec 2020</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__summary fi-o-media-object__summary”>AL WAKRAH, QATAR – DECEMBER 19: Persepolis’ forward Mehdi Abdi Qara (C) celebrates with his team after scoring during the AFC Champions League final between Persepolis and Ulsan Hyundai at the Al Janoub Stadium on December 19, 2020 in Al Wakrah, Qatar. (Photo by Mohamed Farag/Getty Images)</p>
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<h3 class=”d3-o-media-object__title fi-o-media-object__title”>Mehdi Abdi of Persepolis celebrates with his team-mates after scoring during the AFC Champions League final</h3>

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<p class=”d3-o-media-object__date fi-o-media-object__date”>19 Dec 2020</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__summary fi-o-media-object__summary”>AL WAKRAH, QATAR – DECEMBER 19: Mehdi Abdi of Persepolis celebrates with his teammates after scoring during the AFC Champions League final between Persepolis and Ulsan Hyundai at the Al Janoub Stadium on December 19, 2020 in Al Wakrah, Qatar. (Photo by Simon Holmes/Getty Images)</p>
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<h3 class=”d3-o-media-object__title fi-o-media-object__title”>Mehdi Shiri of Persepolis and Kim Insung of Ulsan Hyundai chase the ball during the AFC Champions League final</h3>

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<p class=”d3-o-media-object__date fi-o-media-object__date”>19 Dec 2020</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__summary fi-o-media-object__summary”>AL WAKRAH, QATAR – DECEMBER 19: Mehdi Shiri of Persepolis and Kim In-sung of Ulsan Hyundai chase the ball aduring the AFC Champions League final between Persepolis and Ulsan Hyundai at the Al Janoub Stadium on December 19, 2020 in Al Wakrah, Qatar. (Photo by Simon Holmes/Getty Images)</p>
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<h3 class=”d3-o-media-object__title fi-o-media-object__title”>Yoon Bitgaram of Ulsan shoots at goal during the AFC Champions League final&nbsp;</h3>

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<p class=”d3-o-media-object__date fi-o-media-object__date”>19 Dec 2020</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__summary fi-o-media-object__summary”>AL WAKRAH, QATAR – DECEMBER 19: Yoon Bit-garam of Ulsan Hyundai shoots at goal during the AFC Champions League final between Persepolis and Ulsan Hyundai at the Al Janoub Stadium on December 19, 2020 in Al Wakrah, Qatar. (Photo by Simon Holmes/Getty Images)</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__credits fi-o-media-object__credits”>© Getty Images</p>
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<img data-src=”https://img.fifa.com/image/upload/t_s2/kge82wtt6rmoktyqyjkl.jpg” onerror=”setDefaultPicture(this,’t_l1’, ‘t_l1’, ‘t_l3’, ‘t_s2′);” class=”img-responsive lazyload” alt=”Siamak Nemati of Persepolis controls the ball during the AFC Champions League final”>
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<h3 class=”d3-o-media-object__title fi-o-media-object__title”>Siamak Nemati of Persepolis controls the ball during the AFC Champions League final</h3>

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<p class=”d3-o-media-object__date fi-o-media-object__date”>19 Dec 2020</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__summary fi-o-media-object__summary”>AL WAKRAH, QATAR – DECEMBER 19: Siamak Nemati of Persepolis controls the ball during the AFC Champions League final between Persepolis and Ulsan Hyundai at the Al Janoub Stadium on December 19, 2020 in Al Wakrah, Qatar. (Photo by Simon Holmes/Getty Images)</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__credits fi-o-media-object__credits”>© Getty Images</p>
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<img data-src=”https://img.fifa.com/image/upload/t_s2/nmxivdobv6p5ncihhljr.jpg” onerror=”setDefaultPicture(this,’t_l1’, ‘t_l1’, ‘t_l3’, ‘t_s2′);” class=”img-responsive lazyload” alt=”Junior Negrao of Ulsan misses a penalty but scores the rebound”>
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<h3 class=”d3-o-media-object__title fi-o-media-object__title”>Junior Negrao of Ulsan misses a penalty but scores the rebound</h3>

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<p class=”d3-o-media-object__date fi-o-media-object__date”>19 Dec 2020</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__summary fi-o-media-object__summary”>AL WAKRAH, QATAR – DECEMBER 19: Junior Negrao of Ulsan Hyundai misses a penalty but scores the rebound during the AFC Champions League final between Persepolis and Ulsan Hyundai at the Al Janoub Stadium on December 19, 2020 in Al Wakrah, Qatar. (Photo by Simon Holmes/Getty Images)</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__credits fi-o-media-object__credits”>© Getty Images</p>
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<img data-src=”https://img.fifa.com/image/upload/t_s2/v1608388815/zwqnuakcrd7shc7gweau.jpg” onerror=”setDefaultPicture(this,’t_l1’, ‘t_l1’, ‘t_l3’, ‘t_s2′);” class=”img-responsive lazyload” alt=”Ulsan’s forward Junior Negrao shoots to score during the AFC Champions League final”>
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<h3 class=”d3-o-media-object__title fi-o-media-object__title”>Ulsan’s forward Junior Negrao shoots to score during the AFC Champions League final</h3>

</p>

</div>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__date fi-o-media-object__date”>19 Dec 2020</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__summary fi-o-media-object__summary”>AL WAKRAH, QATAR – DECEMBER 19: Ulsan’s forward Junior Negrao shoots to score during the AFC Champions League final between Persepolis and Ulsan Hyundai at the Al Janoub Stadium on December 19, 2020 in Al Wakrah, Qatar. (Photo by Mohamed Farag/Getty Images)</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__credits fi-o-media-object__credits”>© Getty Images</p>
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<img data-src=”https://img.fifa.com/image/upload/t_s2/kerqtelsz41nowwpetht.jpg” onerror=”setDefaultPicture(this,’t_l1’, ‘t_l1’, ‘t_l3’, ‘t_s2′);” class=”img-responsive lazyload” alt=”Junior Negrao and Kim Insung of Ulsan celebrate&nbsp;”>
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<h3 class=”d3-o-media-object__title fi-o-media-object__title”>Junior Negrao and Kim Insung of Ulsan celebrate&nbsp;</h3>

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<p class=”d3-o-media-object__date fi-o-media-object__date”>19 Dec 2020</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__summary fi-o-media-object__summary”>AL WAKRAH, QATAR – DECEMBER 19: Junior Negrao and Kim In-sung in Ulsan Hyundai celebrate after Negrao scored during the AFC Champions League final between Persepolis and Ulsan Hyundai at the Al Janoub Stadium on December 19, 2020 in Al Wakrah, Qatar. (Photo by Simon Holmes/Getty Images)</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__credits fi-o-media-object__credits”>© Getty Images</p>
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<img data-src=”https://img.fifa.com/image/upload/t_s2/v1608387463/yxfivanfvhgi0rgsrjyz.jpg” onerror=”setDefaultPicture(this,’t_l1’, ‘t_l1’, ‘t_l3’, ‘t_s2′);” class=”img-responsive lazyload” alt=”Ulsan’s forward Junior Negrao celebrates his goal&nbsp;”>
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<h3 class=”d3-o-media-object__title fi-o-media-object__title”>Ulsan’s forward Junior Negrao celebrates his goal&nbsp;</h3>

</p>

</div>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__date fi-o-media-object__date”>19 Dec 2020</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__summary fi-o-media-object__summary”>AL WAKRAH, QATAR – DECEMBER 19: Ulsan’s forward Junior Negrao celebrates his goal during the AFC Champions League final between Persepolis and Ulsan Hyundai at the Al Janoub Stadium on December 19, 2020 in Al Wakrah, Qatar. (Photo by Mohamed Farag/Getty Images)</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__credits fi-o-media-object__credits”>© Getty Images</p>
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<img data-src=”https://img.fifa.com/image/upload/t_s2/tjmjcl7i8vkonbuamt53.jpg” onerror=”setDefaultPicture(this,’t_l1’, ‘t_l1’, ‘t_l3’, ‘t_s2′);” class=”img-responsive lazyload” alt=”Ulsan’s forward Junior Negrao shoots to score during the AFC Champions League final”>
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<h3 class=”d3-o-media-object__title fi-o-media-object__title”>Ulsan’s forward Junior Negrao shoots to score during the AFC Champions League final</h3>

</p>

</div>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__date fi-o-media-object__date”>19 Dec 2020</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__summary fi-o-media-object__summary”>AL WAKRAH, QATAR – DECEMBER 19: Ulsan’s forward Junior Negrao shoots to score during the AFC Champions League final between Persepolis and Ulsan Hyundai at the Al Janoub Stadium on December 19, 2020 in Al Wakrah, Qatar. (Photo by Mohamed Farag/Getty Images)</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__credits fi-o-media-object__credits”>© Getty Images</p>
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<img data-src=”https://img.fifa.com/image/upload/t_s2/v1608388531/cl7hqqj0lpdbkbkojlu0.jpg” onerror=”setDefaultPicture(this,’t_l1’, ‘t_l1’, ‘t_l3’, ‘t_s2′);” class=”img-responsive lazyload” alt=”Ulsan’s forward Junior Negrao celebrates his goal during the AFC Champions League final&nbsp;”>
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<h3 class=”d3-o-media-object__title fi-o-media-object__title”>Ulsan’s forward Junior Negrao celebrates his goal during the AFC Champions League final&nbsp;</h3>

</p>

</div>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__date fi-o-media-object__date”>19 Dec 2020</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__summary fi-o-media-object__summary”>AL WAKRAH, QATAR – DECEMBER 19: Ulsan’s forward Junior Negrao celebrates his goal during the AFC Champions League final between Persepolis and Ulsan Hyundai at the Al Janoub Stadium on December 19, 2020 in Al Wakrah, Qatar. (Photo by Mohamed Farag/Getty Images)</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__credits fi-o-media-object__credits”>© Getty Images</p>
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<img data-src=”https://img.fifa.com/image/upload/t_s2/b8s6ew9hvbpa552f4igf.jpg” onerror=”setDefaultPicture(this,’t_l1’, ‘t_l1’, ‘t_l3’, ‘t_s2′);” class=”img-responsive lazyload” alt=”Junior Negrao of Ulsan celebrates after his first goal during the AFC Champions League final”>
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<h3 class=”d3-o-media-object__title fi-o-media-object__title”>Junior Negrao of Ulsan celebrates after his first goal during the AFC Champions League final</h3>

</p>

</div>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__date fi-o-media-object__date”>19 Dec 2020</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__summary fi-o-media-object__summary”>AL WAKRAH, QATAR – DECEMBER 19: Junior Negrao of Ulsan Hyundai celebrates after his first goal during the AFC Champions League final between Persepolis and Ulsan Hyundai at the Al Janoub Stadium on December 19, 2020 in Al Wakrah, Qatar. (Photo by Simon Holmes/Getty Images)</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__credits fi-o-media-object__credits”>© Getty Images</p>
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<img data-src=”https://img.fifa.com/image/upload/t_s2/v1608388319/tjbugx6r34vi7fhrwi5f.jpg” onerror=”setDefaultPicture(this,’t_l1’, ‘t_l1’, ‘t_l3’, ‘t_s2′);” class=”img-responsive lazyload” alt=”Ulsan’s forward Junior Negrao celebrates his goal during the AFC Champions League final&nbsp;”>
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<h3 class=”d3-o-media-object__title fi-o-media-object__title”>Ulsan’s forward Junior Negrao celebrates his goal during the AFC Champions League final&nbsp;</h3>

</p>

</div>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__date fi-o-media-object__date”>19 Dec 2020</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__summary fi-o-media-object__summary”>AL WAKRAH, QATAR – DECEMBER 19: Ulsan’s forward Junior Negrao celebrates his goal during the AFC Champions League final between Persepolis and Ulsan Hyundai at the Al Janoub Stadium on December 19, 2020 in Al Wakrah, Qatar. (Photo by Mohamed Farag/Getty Images)</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__credits fi-o-media-object__credits”>© Getty Images</p>
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<img data-src=”https://img.fifa.com/image/upload/t_s2/v1608389481/wps9n8s7mbqlonz1povl.jpg” onerror=”setDefaultPicture(this,’t_l1’, ‘t_l1’, ‘t_l3’, ‘t_s2′);” class=”img-responsive lazyload” alt=”Ulsan captain Shin Hojin lifts the AFC Champions League trophy”>
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<h3 class=”d3-o-media-object__title fi-o-media-object__title”>Ulsan captain Shin Hojin lifts the AFC Champions League trophy</h3>

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<p class=”d3-o-media-object__date fi-o-media-object__date”>19 Dec 2020</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__summary fi-o-media-object__summary”>AL WAKRAH, QATAR – DECEMBER 19: Ulsan Hyundai captain, Ho-Jin Shin, lifts the AFC Champions League after the AFC Champions League final between Persepolis and Ulsan Hyundai at the Al Janoub Stadium on December 19, 2020 in Al Wakrah, Qatar. (Photo by Simon Holmes/Getty Images)</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__credits fi-o-media-object__credits”>© Getty Images</p>
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<img data-src=”https://img.fifa.com/image/upload/t_s2/gcpu8lzgii2v6d5h8eme.jpg” onerror=”setDefaultPicture(this,’t_l1’, ‘t_l1’, ‘t_l3’, ‘t_s2′);” class=”img-responsive lazyload” alt=”Ulsan’s players celebrate winning the AFC Champions League final”>
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<h3 class=”d3-o-media-object__title fi-o-media-object__title”>Ulsan’s players celebrate winning the AFC Champions League final</h3>

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<p class=”d3-o-media-object__date fi-o-media-object__date”>19 Dec 2020</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__summary fi-o-media-object__summary”>AL WAKRAH, QATAR – DECEMBER 19: Ulsan’s players celebrate winning the AFC Champions League final between Persepolis and Ulsan Hyundai at the Al Janoub Stadium on December 19, 2020 in Al Wakrah, Qatar. (Photo by Mohamed Farag/Getty Images)</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__credits fi-o-media-object__credits”>© Getty Images</p>
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<h3 class=”d3-o-media-object__title fi-o-media-object__title”>Ulsan’s players celebrate winning the AFC Champions League final</h3>

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<p class=”d3-o-media-object__date fi-o-media-object__date”>19 Dec 2020</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__summary fi-o-media-object__summary”>AL WAKRAH, QATAR – DECEMBER 19: Ulsan’s players celebrate winning the AFC Champions League final between Persepolis and Ulsan Hyundai at the Al Janoub Stadium on December 19, 2020 in Al Wakrah, Qatar. (Photo by Mohamed Farag/Getty Images)</p>
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<h3 class=”d3-o-media-object__title fi-o-media-object__title”>Ulsan Hyundai celebrate after the AFC Champions League final</h3>

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<p class=”d3-o-media-object__date fi-o-media-object__date”>19 Dec 2020</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__summary fi-o-media-object__summary”>AL WAKRAH, QATAR – DECEMBER 19: Ulsan Hyundai celebrate after the AFC Champions League final between Persepolis and Ulsan Hyundai at the Al Janoub Stadium on December 19, 2020 in Al Wakrah, Qatar. (Photo by Simon Holmes/Getty Images)</p>
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<h3 class=”d3-o-media-object__title fi-o-media-object__title”>Ulsan captain Shin Hojin lifts the AFC Champions League&nbsp;</h3>

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<p class=”d3-o-media-object__date fi-o-media-object__date”>19 Dec 2020</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__summary fi-o-media-object__summary”>AL WAKRAH, QATAR – DECEMBER 19: Ulsan Hyundai captain, Ho-Jin Shin, lifts the AFC Champions League after the AFC Champions League final between Persepolis and Ulsan Hyundai at the Al Janoub Stadium on December 19, 2020 in Al Wakrah, Qatar. (Photo by Simon Holmes/Getty Images)</p>
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<h3 class=”d3-o-media-object__title fi-o-media-object__title”>Ulsan celebrate winning the AFC Champions League</h3>

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<p class=”d3-o-media-object__date fi-o-media-object__date”>19 Dec 2020</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__summary fi-o-media-object__summary”>AL WAKRAH, QATAR – DECEMBER 19: Ulsan’s players celebrate winning the AFC Champions League final between Persepolis and Ulsan Hyundai at the Al Janoub Stadium on December 19, 2020 in Al Wakrah, Qatar. (Photo by Mohamed Farag/Getty Images)</p>
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<h3 class=”d3-o-media-object__title fi-o-media-object__title”>Yoon Bitgaram wins the player of the tournament award for the AFC Champions League 2020</h3>

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<p class=”d3-o-media-object__date fi-o-media-object__date”>19 Dec 2020</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__summary fi-o-media-object__summary”>AL WAKRAH, QATAR – DECEMBER 19: Yoon Bit-garam of Ulsan Hyundai collects the best player of the tournament award from Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa bin Ahmed Al Thani, head of the QFA, after the AFC Champions League final between Persepolis and Ulsan Hyundai at the Al Janoub Stadium on December 19, 2020 in Al Wakrah, Qatar. (Photo by Simon Holmes/Getty Images)</p>
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<h3 class=”d3-o-media-object__title fi-o-media-object__title”>Fireworks after the AFC Champions League final at Al Janoub Stadium</h3>

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<p class=”d3-o-media-object__date fi-o-media-object__date”>19 Dec 2020</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__summary fi-o-media-object__summary”>AL WAKRAH, QATAR – DECEMBER 19: General view of Al Janoub Stadium after the AFC Champions League final between Persepolis and Ulsan Hyundai at the Al Janoub Stadium on December 19, 2020 in Al Wakrah, Qatar. (Photo by Mohamed Farag/Getty Images)</p>
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<h4><strong>Under the spotlight</strong></h4>

<p>Brazilian Junior Negrao was the undisputed hero of the game, scoring twice to clinch the title for his team. He proved a threat for the Iranian defenders throughout the encounter, causing havoc with his dribbling skills and pace. His brace takes his total for the tournament to seven goals, which makes him the joint top scorer with Al Nassr’s Abderrazak Hamdallah.</p>

<h4><strong>Awards</strong></h4>

<p><strong>Tournament top scorer</strong>: Abdul Razzaq Hamdallah (Al Nassr), 7 goals (played fewer minutes than Negrao)</p>

<p><strong>Fair Play Award</strong>: Ulsan (Korea Republic)</p>

<p><strong>Player of the Tournament</strong>: Yoon Bitgaram (Ulsan)</p>

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<blockquote class=”twitter-tweet” data-lang=”en” readability=”3.5″><p lang=”en” dir=”ltr”>? The moment Ulsan Hyundai ?? became <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/ACL2020?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#ACL2020</a> Champions!<a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/ACLFinal?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#ACLFinal</a> <a href=”https://t.co/EKyX0VI5sG”>pic.twitter.com/EKyX0VI5sG</a></p>— #ACLFinal (@TheAFCCL) <a href=”https://twitter.com/TheAFCCL/status/1340299698200928257?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>December 19, 2020</a></blockquote>

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<h4><strong>Did you know?</strong></h4>

<p>This is the second time Ulsan have been crowned Asian Champions. Their first success came in 2012, when they beat Saudi Arabia’s Al Ahli 3-0 in the final.</p>

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<blockquote class=”twitter-tweet” data-lang=”en” readability=”2.65625″><p lang=”en” dir=”ltr”>? Lighting up the sky for the <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/ACL2020?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#ACL2020</a> champs!<a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/ACLFinal?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#ACLFinal</a> <a href=”https://t.co/HKVTap3ppQ”>pic.twitter.com/HKVTap3ppQ</a></p>— #ACLFinal (@TheAFCCL) <a href=”https://twitter.com/TheAFCCL/status/1340309838283194370?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>December 19, 2020</a></blockquote>

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<p><strong><a href=”https://blockads.fivefilters.org”></a></strong> <a href=”https://blockads.fivefilters.org/acceptable.html”>(Why?)</a></p> Sat, 19 Dec 2020 20:03:00 +0000
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Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium unveiled to the world with spectacular launch https://www.fifa.com/worldcup/news/ahmad-bin-ali-stadium-unveiled-to-the-world-with-spectacular-launch
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<p>In the presence of His Highness the Amir, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, along with an enthusiastic physically distanced crowd, Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium hosted the 48th Amir Cup final on Qatar National Day to become the fourth fully operational FIFA World Cup 2022™ tournament venue to be inaugurated. Today’s inauguration took place exactly two years ahead of Qatar’s 2022 final.</p>

<p>The stadium – which will become the new home of Al Rayyan Sports Club – follows Khalifa International, Al Janoub and Education City in being declared ready to welcome the first FIFA World Cup™ in the Middle East and the Arab world. The 40,000-capacity venue will host seven matches during Qatar 2022 up to the round-of-16 stage.</p>

<p>Following a spectacular pre-match ceremony featuring music, cultural performances and stunning visual effects, along with a riddle recited by presenters Hamad bin Mohsen Al Naimi and Ali bin Rhema Al Marri, the final between Al Sadd and Al Arabi kicked off.</p>

<p>Among the dignitaries in attendance was FIFA President Gianni Infantino, who praised the Supreme Committee for Delivery &amp; Legacy (SC) for the successful completion of another Qatar 2022 tournament venue.</p>

<p>“The Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium is a wonderful football stadium,” said Infantino. “The atmosphere is incredible, with the seats extremely close to the pitch. Even with a physically distanced crowd, I could feel the passion of the fans. I am sure this will be a perfect football arena in 2022 when it hosts matches during the World Cup.”</p>

<p>He continued: “I would like to congratulate Qatar and HH the Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani on the completion of this venue. The country is very well prepared for the next FIFA World Cup and on track to host a memorable instalment of the tournament – the first in the Middle East and the Arab world.”</p>

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<p>Built on the site of the Al Rayyan Sports Club’s former stadium, the venue is adjacent to the Mall of Qatar and within walking distance of Al Riffa station on the Doha Metro’s Green Line. The stadium’s most striking feature is a glowing façade, comprised of patterns that characterise different aspects of Qatar: the importance of family, the beauty of the desert, native flora and fauna, and local and international trade. A fifth shape – a shield – brings together all the others, representing the strength and unity that are particularly relevant to the desert city of Al Rayyan.</p>

<p>HE Hassan Al Thawadi, the Secretary General of the SC, said: “The inauguration of Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium on Qatar National Day is another important milestone on the road to 2022 and a triumph that is testament to the efforts of everyone involved in putting on such a successful event during a global pandemic. The stadium and surrounding precinct are sure to be a source of pride for Al Rayyan Sports Club and everyone who lives in this historic city.</p>

<p>“Looking ahead to 2021, we look forward to unveiling more stadiums in the new year, as we ensure that all tournament venues are delivered well in advance of the big kick-off in 2022,” added Al Thawadi.</p>

<p>Nasser Al Khater, the Chief Executive Officer of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 LLC, said: “Tonight was an immensely proud occasion for Qatar and the people of Al Rayyan. It was also another opportunity to test our readiness for Qatar 2022, with thousands of fans enjoying the spectacle, despite the challenges caused by the ongoing pandemic. We look forward to developing the Qatar 2022 fan experience further next year when we host more major tournaments, including the FIFA Club World Cup and FIFA Arab Cup – events that are sure to excite football lovers in Qatar, across the region and around the world.”</p>

<p>The match was attended by a host of other famous footballing faces, as well as AFC President HE Shaikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa, CONMEBOL President Alejandro Domínguez and UEFA President Aleksander Čeferin.</p>

</div><p><strong><a href=”https://blockads.fivefilters.org”></a></strong> <a href=”https://blockads.fivefilters.org/acceptable.html”>(Why?)</a></p> Fri, 18 Dec 2020 19:30:00 +0000
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A first-hand World Cup experience https://www.fifa.com/worldcup/news/a-first-hand-world-cup-experience
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<li><strong>Osvaldo Santander is a member of the <a href=”https://www.fanmovement.com/” target=”_blank”>#FIFA Fan Movement</a></strong></li>
<li><strong>Argentinian talks about his relationship with football and the World Cup</strong></li>
<li><strong>”Only a few take away the glory, but everyone can take away the celebrations</strong>!<strong>”</strong></li>
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<p>The passion of the Argentinian fan has been well documented, not least at the last two FIFA World Cups™. In both Brazil and Russia, <em>Albiceleste</em> supporters took their devotion to new levels, attending games in huge numbers while winning admirers with their catchy songs and characteristic colour.</p>

<p>Who better then than an Argentinian member of the <strong><a href=”https://www.fanmovement.com/” target=”_blank”>FIFA Fan Movement</a></strong> to tell us first-hand about the sport closest to his heart, as well as his experience sharing that passion with other fans from all over the globe at the last two FIFA World Cups:</p>

<p>My name is Osvaldo Santander and I’m 55 years old. I have a degree in advertising and, above all, I’m Argentinian. I underline this because it relates directly to my passion for and devotion to football, and my unconditional love for the round ball.</p>

<p>I’ve been attending football games since the age of three, when my father first took me to see my beloved San Lorenzo de Almagro. That gave rise to something inside me that is still growing and has made me part of a large football family that enjoys games, delights in goals, suffers with defeats and experiences many emotions.</p>

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<h3 class=”d3-o-media-object__title fi-o-media-object__title”>FIFA Fan Movement Osvaldo Santander</h3>

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<p class=”d3-o-media-object__date fi-o-media-object__date”>17 Dec 2020</p>
<p class=”d3-o-media-object__summary fi-o-media-object__summary”>FIFA Fan Movement Osvaldo Santander</p>
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<p class=”d3-o-media-object__date fi-o-media-object__date”>17 Dec 2020</p>
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<p class=”d3-o-media-object__date fi-o-media-object__date”>17 Dec 2020</p>
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<p>The 1974 FIFA World Cup in West Germany will forever have a place in my heart. I was nine years old and obsessed with filling my sticker album, which proved impossible but nonetheless led me to watch all the games on a black and white TV. That edition, along with the 1978 World Cup in Argentina, ensured my love of football would endure forever.</p>

<p>My life story constantly references the World Cups: if I want to remember what I was doing at 25, I think of Italia ‘90; if I’m wondering about 2006, then I trace it back to the World Cup in Germany. It’s always been like that.</p>

<p>I’ve also been a collector of football memorabilia for more than 30 years, especially World Cup items. Football brings me joy and lets me dream. It’s a love that never asks anything of you in return.</p>

<p>My World Cup obsession led me to spend two weeks in Brazil for the 2014 edition. I experienced some fantastic shared moments there. A full-on party, swapping football shirts, scarves, flags… I even attended the Algeria-Korea Republic game with low expectations and witnessed an absolute cracker (4-2)… That’s when I first realised that I had to go to Russia 2018!</p>

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<p>I came back very happy from Porto Alegre but then it dawned on me how difficult it would be: getting tickets, travel and accommodation costs, etc… My friends told me I was crazy, but nothing could deflect me from my goal.</p>

<p>The first positive sign came from FIFA, who granted me tickets for the seven matches I’d applied for, all in Moscow. There was also the chance of seeing Argentina there, but there were still two matchdays left in South American qualifying and we were struggling to secure our place.</p>

<p>Luckily, we qualified and I could breathe again. Those tickets were not only for me, but also for my son Julian – my companion on a thousand football adventures – my sister Maria Mercedes and a friend who was committed to our cause from the beginning.</p>

<p>Then we bought our flights. Eight months ahead of the World Cup, we already had the most important thing!</p>

<p>The months leading up to it were exciting. There were meetings with other fans who were joining us, and lots of plans to meet people whom I’m in contact with in other countries. Many of them are also collectors, and they too contributed to making this trip so wonderful.</p>

<p>As we were going to be 18 days in Moscow, we rented an apartment near the Luzhniki stadium, behind Moscow University.</p>

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<p>En route to Russia, we had an eight-hour stopover in Frankfurt, and so to pass the time, we spread out all the flags we had with us on the floor. Other fans followed suit, and soon we’d created a magical global confraternity.</p>

<p>Russia 2018 was pure joy and excitement; everything was incredibly well organised. The authorities were cordial but strict, which helped us enjoy an event of great emotion in a controlled way, without fights or anything like that. That’s remarkable.</p>

<p>If I were to recommend one thing, it’d be to arrive a few days before the start of the tournament. We got there four days early and met loads of fans in a state of complete bliss. None of us had had results to celebrate or be down about, that was all still to come.</p>

<p>With no tickets to the Opening Ceremony, we left early for Fan Fest. To say it was fabulous is an understatement. We’d seen it in Brazil, but this was on another scale. During half-time in Russia-Saudi Arabia, we approached the stadium on the hunt for memorabilia for our own museum: plastic cups that had been binned, credentials, merchandising… anything and everything!</p>

<p>Two days later, it was our turn to see our beloved Argentina against Iceland at the Spartak Stadium. We went with our football shirts, hats and flags, as well as stickers and 300 coasters, which we handed out to anyone we came across.</p>

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<p>Hearing our national anthem was very emotional. My son and I were crying because, just a few months previously, the person who’d nurtured my love of football – my father (his grandfather Paco) – had passed away, and we felt that he was accompanying us. The result was not as important as the joy of having cheered on our national team so far from home. That was unforgettable.</p>

<p>After that we attended the Germany-Mexico, Poland-Senegal, Portugal-Morocco, Belgium-Tunisia and Denmark-France games before we ended our adventure with Brazil-Serbia. Those games were fantastic for acquiring content for for our museum: we got shirts, inflatables, tickets, glasses and many other things.</p>

<p>Safely through to the last 16, we began the journey back to Argentina with a host of unforgettable experiences. And all because football is unpredictable: win or lose, you always take away stories and moments that stay with you for the rest of your life.</p>

<p>You meet at a huge amount of diverse and inclusive people at a World Cup. You jump for joy and find yourself hugging and singing with other fans, and when you look closely, you see one is German, one Ecuadorian, another Senegalese, another Romanian… we even met someone from Nepal! It’s magnificent!</p>

<p>A World Cup is not just about players, officials and coaching staff trying to win the Trophy. It is the coming-together of the world’s people, all pulsating with the same passion, the same feeling. Only a few take away the glory, but everyone can take away the celebrations! Long live football!”</p>

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<p><strong><a href=”https://blockads.fivefilters.org”></a></strong> <a href=”https://blockads.fivefilters.org/acceptable.html”>(Why?)</a></p> Fri, 18 Dec 2020 17:29:00 +0000
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