Written By Jacobs Dunga
Three clubs will flag the nation’s flag at this year’s AFC Champions League.
Saudi Pro League will have its representatives in the AFC Champions League which gets underway on Monday.
Champions Al Ittihad, last season’s Champions League finalists Al Hilal and league runners up Al Nassr are the flag bearers of the Roshn Super League.
However, there could be a possible lawsuit against the teams from the Arab nation as regards ownership issues.
Those three clubs are owned the PIF and could potentially fa victim of AFC’s ownership rules.
The multi club ownership law does not allow for the teams owned by same company or individual to enter the tournament in order to protect the integrity of the competition.
Several leading Asian clubs from other countries are readying legal action against the AFC and its chairman, Sheikh Salman bin Ibrahim al-Khalifa as reported by Daily Star.
“At the moment, multi-club ownerships are only prohibited in the AFC Champions League in cases where there is a “material risk” that it could potentially “jeopardise the integrity of an AFC club competition and/or any match”, with the burden of proof on the participating clubs to demonstrate why they present no such risk.” Revealed the article.
Such teams who pose no threat to the competition’s integrity despite being under same ownership are Melbourne City of Australia and Mumbai City of India.
The competition is initially split into two regional zones and the chances of both teams coming against each other is very slim.
Al Ittihad Will welcome AGMK of Uzbekistan to Prince Abdullah Al Faisal Stadium while Al Hilal welcome another Uzbekistan side in Navbahor Namangan.
Al Nassr travel to Iran to face Persepolis on Tuesday.
Al Ettifaq manager Steven Gerrard has revealed his job is beyond just coaching the club.
Speaking at the post match press conference of his team’s 3-1 victory over Abha Club, he reckons he is here to help nurture local talents which is his responsibility towards the kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
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“I am not here only to coach Ettifaq Club, and certainly this is a great responsibility, but I feel that I have a responsibility towards the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to develop Saudi players and give the opportunity to the local talents in my team and develop them as much as possible.”
The Dammam based club sit fifth on the log with thirteen points from six games, three adrift table toppers Al Hilal.
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