Ahead of the second leg of Asian Champions League final on Saturday, here’s some facts and figures you might be interested in.
- Guangzhou Evergrande are the fifth club to reach the ACL final on more than one occasion after Al Ain (2003 & 2005), Al Ittihad (2004, 2005 & 2009), Seongnam (2004 & 2010) and Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors (2006 & 2011). They are also looking to become just the second team to win title twice after Saudi Arabia’s Al Ittihad.
- Al Ahli are the first UAE side to play in the ACL final since 2005 when Al Ain finished runners-up after losing 5-3 on aggregate to Al Ittihad of Saudi Arabia. They are also the 20th different club to reach the ACL final since the inaugural tournament in 2002/03.
- Brazilian forward Ricardo Goulart remains the leading scorer in the tournament with eight goals despite failing to score in Guangzhou’s last four games. His closest challenger is Al Ahli talisman Ahmed Khalil who has six.
- Al Ahli have been unbeaten in their last 10 home games in the ACL, drawing six matches and winning four including their dramatic 3-2 victory over Al Hilal in the semi-finals, while Guangzhou have been unbeaten in their last five appearances since losing 2-1 to Seongnam FC in the first leg of the Round of 16.
- Luiz Felipe Scolari, who replaced Fabio Cannavaro as Guangzhou head coach in June, is trying to become the second coach to win both the FIFA World Cup and ACL after his successor Marcello Lippi.
- Former Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Paulinho is also trying to win a second continental club title after helping Corinthians to win the Copa Libertadores in 2012 with a 3-1 aggregate victory over Argentina’s Boca Juniors in the final.
- Lima will be hoping to make it fourth time lucky in a continental club final after finishing as a runner-up in the UEFA Europa League final with Portugal’s Sporting Braga in 2011 and Benfica in 2013 and 2014.