Al Hilal Saudi Arabia’s victory in the 2021 AFC Champions League brought to mind the memory of Portugal winning the 2016 European Championship, after they qualified for the playoffs in a similar way before winning the title.
Al Hilal defeated South Korean Pohang 2-0 in the AFC Champions League to win the competition for the second time in its history after the 2019 edition.
Al-Hilal qualified for the playoffs in the current edition, after it was among the best seconds in the group stage, after Al-Ahly Jeddah and Al-Duhail Al-Qatari tied in the last matches of that round.
Al Hilal collected 10 points in the group stage and was close to exiting the first round. However, Al Ahly and Al Duhail tied and got 9 points, which contributed to Al Hilal qualifying as the third best second alongside the Iranian Traktor and the Emirati Al Wahda from the Al Gharb region.
In the second round, Al Hilal overcame Esteghlal Tehran 2-0 in the final price, and hit its traditional rival Persepolis in the quarter-finals with a white trio, before beating its neighbor Al Nasr in the semi-final 2-1, and finally beating Pohang in the final match.
Portugal won the 2016 European Championship after finishing in the best seconds, two goals ahead of Turkey and Albania, after drawing 3 times in the group stage.
In the second round, Portugal overtook Croatia in extra times, and in the quarter-finals, they overcame Poland on penalties, before eliminating Wales with two goals without a response in the semi-finals, and finally Eder scored a historic goal against France, the host country, to win the tournament.