Pohang Steelers
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The past
Over the past 36 years, Pohang Steelers have established themselves as one of the strongest clubs in Korea Republic, winning four national championships and two Korean FA Cups. However, it was not until 1997 that the Steelers began to make waves on the continental stage. They won their first Asian Club Championship - the forerunner to the AFC Champions League - in a hard-fought 2-1 victory over compatriots Ilhwa Chunma, before lifting their second continental trophy after a narrow win on penalties against Chinese champions Dalian Wanda the following year.

The present
When Sergio Farias arrived at the Steelyard five years ago, few expected him to revive the fortunes of the club so quickly. But the Brazilian tactician - or magician, according to his supporters - led the Steelers to their fourth K-League title in 2007 and the FA Cup last year. Thanks to these achievements, Pohang could return to the Asian stage, where they failed to progress beyond the group stage in 2008. The Steelers bounced back in impressive fashion in this year's AFC Champions League, though, topping their group before going all the way to the final in Tokyo. Against Saudi Arabian giants Al Ittihad, Pohang emerged victorious in a 2-1 thriller to win their third trophy in Asia's premier club competition.

The future
When Pohang take part in the FIFA Club World Cup in December, it will be the first time that the club has competed at this level. And while their attack-minded approach has paid dividends on the domestic and continental fronts, the Steelers' ability to deal with stronger opponents will be severely tested in UAE. "You have to have both technical and physical aspects, but you have to achieve results, which are everything in football," said Farias. "We want to play football that is beautiful to watch, but also achieve results."

Facts and figures
Former stars

Lee Hoi-Taek, Park Sung-Hwa, Choi Soon-Ho, Park Kyung-Hoon, Park Tae-Ha, Rade Bogdanovic, Hong Myung-Bo, Hwang Sun-Hong, Kim Byung-Ji, Lee Dong-Gook

Key players
Kim Gi-Dong, Choi Hyo-Jin, Denilson, No Byung-Jun, Stevo Ristik, Hwang Jae-Won, Kim Hyung-Il

Qualifying statistics
Farias's charges topped Group H with three wins and three draws, ahead of Kawasaki Frontale, Tianjin Teda and Central Coast Mariners. A 6-0 defeat of Newcastle Jets in the Round of 16 set up a thrilling quarter-final meeting with Luiz Felipe Scolari's Bunyodkor,  who they were able to defeat 5-4 on aggregate, after bouncing back from a 3-1 defeat on the road and winning 4-1 in extra time at the Steelyard. Pohang then earned a 4-1 win on aggregate to see off Umm-Salal in the semi-finals, before defeating Al Ittihad 2-1 on goals from No Byung-Jun and Kim Hyung-Il in the final in Tokyo.

The numbers game
3 - Pohang Steelers became the first club in Asia to win the continental championship three times, upon winning this year's AFC Champions League. The Steelers had won the Asian Club Championship twice before, in 1997 and 1998.