Asia is the third most attractive destination for club Football after Europe and South America. The Asian continental isn’t just at a high pedestal but has grown to become a major force.
For years now, Asian teams have continued to perform higher in the FIFA Club World Cup, although the competition had been hosted several times within the continent.
Asia remains one of the best football continents in the world.
However, there are also leagues in the continent with bragging rights. The leagues from the far and eastern asis tend to perform better compared to those in the middle, north and south.
Leagues like the Chinese Super League, Saudi Arabia Pro League, South Korea K-League and Japanese J-League have been the ones with the most outstanding teams in the continent.
Note: Ranking based on AFC 5-year ranking points
Ranking the best football League in Asia 2021
1. United Arab Emirates – Pro League
The United Arab Emirates Division 1 or as the Arabian Gulf League is the top professional football league in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Al-Ain has won the league for a record 13 times. The league operates on the promotion and relegation system.
2. South Korea – K-League
The South Korean K-League is one of the strongest leagues in Asia based on its member clubs performance in all continental competitions.
K-League is a powerhouse with big teams like Urawa Reds, Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors, Ulsan Hyundai.
K-League or K League 1 is the men’s top professional football league in South Korean football league system. The league is contested by twelve clubs.
3. China Super League
Professionally known as the Ping An Chinese Super League, it has become the next traditional home for footballers across the world.
Majorly, players from Brazil, Europe and Africa dominate the list of foreign-based players, leading Chinese teams to higher places on the continental level.
Chinese teams include Guangzhou Evergrande, Shanghai Shenhua and Beijing FC.
4. Saudi Arabia Pro League
The Saudi Arabia Professional Football League is one of the best in the continent. The league has produced some of the best teams that have also represented the continent in FIFA Club World Cup.
Al-Hilal remains the most successful league in the country with over three Champions League titles as well as 16 league titles.
From 2013 to 2019 it was known as the Abdul Latif Jameel League, or Dawry Jameel, as it was sponsored by Abdul Latif Jameel for six years.
5. Japan J-League 1
The J1 League is the top division of the Japan Professional Football League. It is one of the most successful leagues in Asian club football. Meiji Yasuda Life is currently the official sponsor of the league and thus officially known as the Meiji Yasuda J1 League.
Kashima Antlers remains the most successful club in Japan. They’ve represented Japan and Asia in the FIFA Club World Cup, getting close to the final.
6. Qatar Premier League – Qatar Stars League
The league is one of the fastest-growing football league in Asia with a high influx of foreigners most especially from European countries, Brazil and South America.
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The Qatari Stars League is also considered as one of the richest leagues in the Asian continental. Al-Duhail is the most successful club with 14 domestic titles.
7. Iran – Persian Gulf Pro League
The Persian Gulf Pro League is the highest division of professional football in Iran. It operates on the promotion and relegation system.
Persepolis is the most with 13 titles including 6 Pro League titles as it was formerly known.
8. Australian A-League
A-League is the highest-level professional men’s soccer league in Australia. At the top of the Australian league system, it is the country’s primary competition for the sport. The league is currently contested by twelve teams; eleven based in Australia and one based in New Zealand.
A-League has been able to attract lots of foreign footballers as well as foreign investors.
Sydney FC is the most successful club with 5 titles.
9. Uzbekistan – Uzbekistan Super League
Uzbekistan Super League due to sponsorship reasons is the top division of professional football in Uzbekistan. Founded in 1992 and currently plays with 14 teams.
Pakhtakor is the most successful club with 13 titles.
10. Thailand – Thai League 1 (Toyota Thai League)
Thai League 1 or T1, is the top level of the Thai football league system. Contested by 16 clubs, it operates on a system of promotion and relegation.