United City grouped with Thai, Aussie champs in AFC Champions League

Originally published by Sports Interactive Network Philippines

UNITED City FC will be playing against Thailand titleholder BG Pathum United and Australia winner Melbourne City FC in Group G of the 2022 AFC Champions League to be held in April.

The 2020 Philippines Football League champion is bracketed with the two champion clubs along with Jeonnam Dragons, winner of the Korean FA Cup last year, following a draw ceremony held in the Asian Football Confederation headquarters in Kuala Lumpur.

It will be the second straight year that UCFC will be seeing action in the AFC Champions League, after winning one out of its six matches last year.

United City FC gained the spot for the Philippines in the AFC Champions League for being the 2020 champions after last year’s league competition was cancelled due to the pandemic.

UCFC will be playing in the AFC Champions League without the benefit of competitive matches after it decided not to participate in the 2021 Copa Paulino Alcantara.

The club will also be without some key players from last year’s campaign including striker Bienve Maranon, who decided to play for a still undisclosed Asia team.

Copa Paulino Alcantara winner Kaya FC-Iloilo has to go through qualifying for a place in Group H.

Kaya, aiming for its second appearance in the group stage, will first play an Australia club on March 8, the winner to go up against Changchun Yatai of China on March 15.

Korea league winner Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors lead the clubs in Group H along with Yokohama F. Marinos of Japan and Hoang Anh Gia Lai of Vietnam.

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