K League changes schedule following postponement of club tournament matches

March 19, 2021

 The top South Korean football league announced a schedule change on Friday, following a recent postponement of matches for an Asian club tournament.

The K League 1 had been set to go on a break from April 12 to May 20, in order to accommodate clubs playing in the group stage for the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Champions League. Those group matches were supposed to be played from April 21 to May 7.

However, the AFC announced on March 11 that those matches will be played in the June-July period instead, due to effects of the coronavirus pandemic.

In this Associated Press file photo from Dec. 19, 2020, members of Ulsan Hyundai FC celebrate winning the Asian Football Confederation Champions League title at Al Janoub Stadium in Al Wakrah, Qatar. (Yonhap)

In this Associated Press file photo from Dec. 19, 2020, members of Ulsan Hyundai FC celebrate winning the Asian Football Confederation Champions League title at Al Janoub Stadium in Al Wakrah, Qatar. (Yonhap)

That forced the K League to readjust its schedule and 10 rounds of matches, initially set to be played from May 21 to July 18, moved to the April 17-May 30 period.

The midseason break for the league will now come from May 31 to July 19, taking into account both the AFC tournament and the FIFA international match window of May 31-June 15.

Three South Korean clubs are in the group stage at the AFC tournament: defending champions Ulsan Hyundai FC in Group F, Pohang Steelers in Group G and Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors in Group H. Daegu FC will take on Chiangrai United in a playoff match either in June or July for a spot in Group I.

The AFC has said group matches will take place in centralized venues for each group to minimize traveling for clubs. Group G matches will run from June 21 to July 6, but schedules for Groups F, H and I have not been determined.

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