|Number of teams||18|
|Level on pyramid||4|
|Domestic cup(s)||Korean FA Cup|
|League cup(s)||Challengers Cup|
FC Pocheon |
FC Pocheon |
|2016 K3 League|
|Revised Romanization||K3 Rigeu|
2007 was the inaugural season of the K3 League, and ten teams competed in the competition.
The season operated a two-stage system, with each side playing each other once in each stage for a combined total of eighteen matches (nine in each stage). The winners of both stages, Hwasung Shinwoo Electronics FC and Seoul United respectively, plus the two teams with the best overall record from both stages, Cheonan FC and Yongin FC, entered the championship playoffs. Seoul United emerged victorious in the championship playoffs, defeating Hwasung Shinwoo Electronics FC 3–0 on aggregate. The four playoff teams earned a spot in the 2008 FA Cup competition.
Seven new clubs registered ahead of the 2008 season with just one of the founder members, Daegu Korea Powertrain, withdrawing from the league set-up.
After the first stage of the 2008 season, Changwon United withdrew from the league due to financial problem. At the end of the 2008 season, Seoul Pabal FC was closed down because some their players were implicated in the K3 League match fixing scandal.
From the 2009 season, three new clubs registered to bring the total of competing clubs to 17.
On December 1, 2009, it was announced that Seoul Yangcheon FC, Yeonggwang FC and Chuncheon Citizen FC would join the league for the 2010 season. The top nine finishers would earn a spot in the next year's FA Cup competition. The KFA also announced that undergraduates would not be allowed to play from the 2012 season onward.
On January 15, 2010, KFA announced the league schedule for the 2010 season. Seoul Yangcheon FC postponed joining the league until 2011 season. Jeonju Ongoeul FC withdrew and is now defunct.
K3 League was renamed as the Challengers League prior to the start of the 2011 season.
The 2013 season started with Hwaseong FC as the new team. Namyangju United FC, however, withdrew and Bucheon FC 1995 left after receiving approval to join the K-League. This left eighteen teams to contest the season.
In January 2014, on the day of the fixtures meeting, Asan United withdrew from the league with plans to return in 2015. FC Uijeongbu, formed at the end of the 2013 season as a citizens club, joined the league for the 2014. This meant that the total number of teams remained at eighteen. Another minor change to the league was made public in the week before the start of the season. The name of the league, for the 2014 season, was officially changed from Challengers League to K3 League Challengers.
In January 2015, to avoid confusing with K League Challenge, the league name was changed back to K3 League.
League Name History
- 2007-2010 : K3 League
- 2011-2013 : Challengers League
- 2014 : K3 Challengers League
- 2015-present : K3 League
In 2008 season, it operated its season in two stages, with the winners of each stage and the two runners-up advancing to the post-season championship playoffs. If in the event of the same team winning both stages, there will be no playoff.
In 2009 season, the championship playoff was abolished. Each club played the others twice, once at their home stadium and once at that of their opponents, for a total of 32 games.
The 2010 season ran from March 13 through October 30. The 16 teams in the league are divided into the Group A and Group B — eight in the Group A, eight in the Group B. Each team competes against the other team in same group twice, home and away, the other group's team once, home or away, for a total of 22 games. The two group winners and two runners-up qualify to the Championship playoff.
Members for 2016 season
The following 20 clubs will compete in the K3 League during the 2016 season.
|Buyeo FC||Buyeo||Buyeo Stadium||2015||2016||Kang Jeong-hoon|
|Cheongju City FC||Cheongju||Heungdeok Football Patk||2004||2007||Seo Won-sang|
|Cheongju FC||Cheongju||Cheongju Stadium||2002||2009||Kim Jong-hyun|
|Chuncheon FC||Chuncheon||Chuncheon Stadium||2010||2010||Kim Yong-ho|
|Gimpo Citizen||Gimpo||Gimpo City Stadium||2013||2013||Yoo Jong-wan|
|Goyang Citizen||Goyang||Goyang Eoulimnuri ground||2008||2008||Kim Jin-ok|
|Gyeongju Citizen||Gyeongju||Gyeongju Civic Stadium||2008||2008||Kim Jin-hyung|
|Hwaseong FC||Hwaseong||Hwaseong Stadium||2013||2013||Kim Jong-boo|
|Icheon Citizen||Icheon||Icheon City Stadium||2009||2009||Lee Hyun-chang|
|Jeonju FC||Jeonju||Jeonju University ground||2007||2007||Yang Young-cheol|
|Jungnang Chorus Mustang||Seoul||Jungnang Public Ground||2012||2012||Yoo Bong-ki|
|Paju Citizen||Paju||Paju Public Stadium||2012||2012||Oh Won-jae|
|FC Pocheon||Pocheon||Pocheon Stadium||2008||2008||In Chang-soo|
|Pyeongchang FC||Pyeongchang||Pyeongchang Stadium||2008||2008||Hwang Young-woo|
|Siheung Citizen||Siheung||Siheung Stadium||2015||2016||Rinero|
|Seoul United||Seoul||Madeul Stadium||2007||2007||Kim Chang-kyum|
|FC Uijeongbu||Uijeongbu||Uijeongbu Stadium||2014||2014||Kim Hee-tae|
|Yangju Citizen||Yangju||Yangju Stadium||2007||2007||Lee Seung-hee|
|Yangpyeong FC||Yangpyeong||Yangpyeong Stadium||2015||2016||Cha Seung-yong|
|Yeonggwang FC||Yeonggwang||Yeonggwang Sportium||2010||2010||Kim Han-bong|
|Daegu Korea Powertrain||2007||2007||Defunct|
|Changwon United||2007||2008 (1st stage)||Defunct|
|Seoul Pabal FC||2007||2008||Defunct|
|Jeonju Ongoeul FC||2008||2009||Defunct|
|Samcheok Shinwoo Electronics||2007||2010||Defunct|
|Bucheon FC 1995||2008||2012||K League|
Titles By Season
Titles By Club
|FC Pocheon||5 (2009, 2012, 2013, 2015, 2016)||1 (2014)|
|Gyeongju Citizen||2 (2010, 2011)||1 (2015)|
|Yangju Citizen||1 (2008)||1 (2011)|
|Hwaseong FC||1 (2014)|
|Seoul United||1 (2007)|
|Hwasung Shinwoo Electronics||3 (2007, 2008, 2010)|
|Gwangju Gwangsan FC||1 (2009)|
|Chuncheon FC||1 (2012)|
|Paju Citizen||1 (2013)|
|Cheongju City||1 (2016)|
- Cha Gi-Suk (Gyeongju Citizen)
- Cho Hyun-Doo (Yongin FC)
- Hwang Yeon-Seok (Seoul United)
- Jang Dae-Il (Formerly of Yangju FC)
- Jung Jae-Kwon (Seoul United)
- Lee Byung-Keun (Seoul United)
- Lee Sang-Hun (Yongin FC)
- K League Classic
- K League Challenge
- Korea National League
- Korean FA Cup
- Korean football league system