Konami signs AFC Champions League for Pro Evolution Soccer series

The AFC Champions League will appear in upcoming Pro Evolution Soccer titles from Konami as the result of an agreement the publisher signed with the AFC, Konami Digital Entertainment announced today.

Neither financial terms nor the length of the agreement were disclosed.

The AFC Champions League is an annual tournament that decides the best team in the Asian Football Confederation (AFC). Under the terms of the AFC's deal with Konami, the Pro Evolution Soccer developers will build a new game mode just for the AFC Champions League, allowing players to partake in the tournament and play as one of 32 qualifying clubs.

"The acquisition of such a high-profile license such as the AFC Champions League is integral to our ambitious plans for the Pro Evolution Soccer series," said Shinji Hirano, president of Konami Digital Entertainment, in a press release announcing the contract. Konami's direct competitor, Electronic Arts and its FIFA franchise, continues to lead the soccer video game genre thanks to its exclusive licensing agreements with organizations such as the Barclays Premier League. But this deal adds the AFC Champions League to Pro Evolution Soccer's list of top licenses, which already includes Europe's UEFA Champions League.

"We are very excited to see the AFC Champions League integrated into the acclaimed Pro Evolution Soccer series, and foresee a long, close and mutually beneficial partnership for us both," said Dr. Hafez Al Medlej, chairman of the AFC marketing committee.

Konami has not yet announced the next entry in the Pro Evolution Soccer franchise. The most recent game was 2012's Pro Evolution Soccer 2013.

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