Asian Champions League will shift to fall start from 2023

The Asian Champions League will change its start time from spring to autumn from 2023, the Asian Football Confederation said Friday as part reforms to the club competition.

The move will “enable Asia’s top clubs to benefit from more synchronized transfer windows,” the AFC said in a statement, adding it will improve “opportunities to sign quality players and coaches with respect to worldwide leagues’ seasons.”

Starting from the 2023-24 tournament, the limit on players from any foreign nation will be increased from three to five, while the existing slot for one player from a country with an AFC member association will be retained.

The AFC also set its 2022 World Cup qualifying Asian playoff for June 7 in Doha between third-placed teams of the final qualifying round Groups A and B.

The winner will play the South America Federation’s fifth-placed qualifier for a berth at the World Cup finals, starting in November.

Japan currently sits second in Group B and can secure an automatic qualification with a win away against Australia on March 24.

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