The AFC reveals the reasons for not punishing Al Hilal
Abdul Khaleq Masoud, Vice Chairman of the AFC Competitions Committee, confirmed that the stability of the Champions League on the continent and the support of participating clubs is a catalyst for creating a technical force for the tournament without prejudice to the scales of applying the necessary penalties by the committee.
Masoud explained to the German news agency (dpa): As you know, the 2020 championship took place in the circumstances of the Corona virus crisis, and that is why we found a club like the Saudi Hilal, the champion of the 2019 edition, which faced very harsh conditions that made him withdraw from the tournament, as well as the Malaysian club Johor, the Malaysian Exaltation House and the Emirati unity, which were unable to Their countries leave the venue of the tournament to announce their withdrawal, and these situations should be dealt with exceptionally and not as usual, as in the regulations that impose on the retreating club to freeze for a period of two continental years.
He added: With regard to the issue of Al-Hilal Club, which played the group stage until it reached the last match in this role and the majority of its players and administrative and technical apparatus were struck by the Corona virus, it was natural for there to be a realistic vision away from the text of the regular law imposed by the Disciplinary Committee if the issue of the withdrawal of the club was transferred to it with almost unanimous approval of the members The vote was taken not to refer the issue of Al Hilal Club to the Disciplinary Committee, in understanding what happened to its mission in Doha, which led to its withdrawal.
And the AFC had excluded Al Hilal from the 2020 AFC Champions League after most of the mission members were infected with the Corona virus, and the team was unable to complete the list of 13 players in its match against the UAE’s Al-Ahly Dubai Youth Club, after it was the leader of its group.
He added: A member of the Saudi Competitions Committee Ibrahim Al-Qassem made a great effort to inform all members of the nature of what happened to Al-Hilal Club, accompanied by evidence, explaining what the club had suffered in order to avoid referring the punishment to the Disciplinary Committee, which happened with the number of votes in the committee, and as I said, the circumstance of Al Hilal Club deserves sympathy. And stand with him from everyone.
Abdul Khaleq Masoud indicated that the Competitions Committee had submitted what was agreed upon as an administrative procedure to the Executive Office.
The AFC Champions League draw will take place on Wednesday, January 27, according to the AFC announced on its website, where 40 clubs will participate for the first time after the decision to increase the number of clubs from 32 to 40.