AZAL PFK

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AZAL PFK
AZAL PFC Baku.jpg
Full name AZAL Peşəkar Futbol Klubu
Nickname(s) Təyyarəçilər (The Pilots)
Founded 1996; 18 years ago (1996) (as AMMK)
Ground AZAL Arena
Ground Capacity 3,500
Owner AZAL
President Zaur Akhundov
Manager Tarlan Ahmadov
League Azerbaijan Premier League
2013–14 8th
Current season

AZAL PFK (Azerbaijani: AZAL Peşəkar Futbol Klubu) is an Azerbaijani football club based in Şüvəlan, Baku. The club competes in the Azerbaijan Premier League.

The club was renamed three times in its short history becoming Olimpik Baku, Olimpik-Shuvalan Baku and AZAL. UEFA is still recognizing the club as Olimpik-Shuvalan at European competitions.[1]

The club is also a member of the European Club Association, an organization that replaced the previous G-14 which consists of major football clubs in Europe.

History[edit]

Early years (1996–2006)[edit]

The club were established in 1996 as a futsal club under the name of AMMK. It participated in national futsal league from the season 1996–97 till 2003–04.[2][3] AMMK also represented Azerbaijan in UEFA Futsal Cup 2003/04 season.

AMMK became professional football team in 2004 and joined the Azerbaijan First Division. The first Azerbaijan Premier League season was not much successful for Olimpik Baku. Croatian manager Stjepan Čordaš worked just for a couple of month and was sacked after poor results. His place was taken by Serbian Petar Kurčubić, but he was also unable to achieve good results, and Olimpik Baku finished 12th. At that time, Olimpik was called 'The Club from Balkans', as there were a lot of players from Balkan countries such as Marko Mitrović, Srdjan Baljak, Rašo Babić, Saša Kovačević, Tomislav Višević and others.[4]

Abdullayev years (2006–2009)[edit]

In June 2006, Asgar Abdullayev was appointed as a new head coach of Olimpik. He still remains as the most successful manager in clubs' history. Led by Abdullayev, Olimpik improved its results, ranked 6th in 2007 and 2nd in 2008. Olimpik came very closed to win 2007–08 league title, but the team was beaten by Qarabağ at last round game, although they only had to play a draw.[5]

Olimpik's debut in European competitions was also not successful as they were eliminated in the 1st qualifying round of 2008–09 UEFA Cup by Serbian side Vojvodina. Roman Akhalkatsi became the first goalscorer of Olimpik in the European club tournaments.[6]

Recent years (2009–present)[edit]

In 2009, the club moved from center to Shuvalan settlement and was renamed into Olimpik-Shuvalan PFC.[7][8] In November 2009, Asgar Abdullayev completed his mission and he was changed by former Azerbaijani football star Nazim Suleymanov.[9] At his debut season Suleymanov took the team over the Azerbaijan Cup quarter-final for a first time in its history. The club once again was renamed in 2010, this time to AZAL PFC due to sponsorship reasons from airline company Azerbaijan Airlines.[10][11] In September 2010, the club management announced the construction of new AZAL Arena in Shuvalan.

The 2010-11 Azerbaijan Premier League season was a great for AZAL. The team finished 4th and entered UEFA Europa League 2011-12 season. Although the club was renamed into AZAL in 2010, it represented as Olimpik-Shuvalan in UEFA Europa League competitions due to UEFA's sponsorship regulations.[1] Before the home game against Minsk, Suleymanov said that he would resign in case of defeat.[12] AZAL lost to Minsk 2–3 in aggregate, and Suleymanov announced his resignation after second match in Minsk.[13]

In July, club president Vaqif Gasymov invited Elkhan Abdullayev to AZAL and he signed a one-year contract. He started with a brilliance victory over Simurq (3:0), but resigned after 11 games, when AZAL came down to 11th position.[14] The club sponsors made a decision to replace him by Rafig Mirzayev, Abdullayev's former assistant. Mirzayev started as a caretaker, winning 3 games consecutively and taking the team up to 7th place. In December 2011, Mirzayev signed a half-year contract with AZAL.[15] In April, after the unsuccessful run, Mirzayev was sacked, and Azerbaijan national football team former manager Vagif Sadygov was appointed as a new head coach.[16]

It was an ambiguous season for AZAL and its manager. The team won 16 games, scored 57 goals renewing own records, but for the second time consecutively did not enter Championship Group after Preliminary Round. The management recognized the season as unsuccessful despite the fact that the team has won 9 of the 10 matches in the relegation group.[17] Brazilian striker Nildo scored 21 goals showing the best individual record in AZAL's history for the scorers in a single season and became one of the topscorers of the 2012–13 Azerbaijan Premier League.

The summer of 2013, saw more budget cuts and several big names as Nildo, Zouhir Benouahi, Usim Nduka and etc. leaving the club, but this time the main concern for fans was the very future of the club.[18]

Stadium[edit]

Main article: AZAL Arena
AZAL Arena

AZAL Arena1.jpg

UEFA Nuvola apps mozilla.pngNuvola apps mozilla.png
Location Shuvalan, Baku, Azerbaijan
Owner AZAL PFK
Capacity 3,500
Surface Artificial
Construction
Broke ground 2009
Opened 10 April 2011
Tenants
AZAL PFK

AZAL Arena is a football stadium in Shuvalan settlement of Baku, Azerbaijan. It is currently used as club's home stadium and holds 3,500 people. The club plans to construct another tribune by increasing stadiums' capacity to 6000 in the upcoming years.

During 2005–2011 years AZAL played its home games at Shafa Stadium.

Crest and colours[edit]

AZAL changed the crest four times during its short history. Between 1996–2004 years the crest was the same of AMMK's organisation logo. In 2005, as soon as AMMK was renamed into Olimpik Baku the logo was also modified. New logo was the form of circular blue shield with the Olympic flame in the middle.

In 2009, it was designed a new version of the crest with a white and blue stripes, and remained for a next season, however the club became AZAL PFK. Current logo seems like the older logo, but in the center of traditional blue circular shield is drawn an airliner[19]

Shirt sponsors and kit manufacturers[edit]

Period Kit manufacturer Shirt sponsor
2004–06 Italy Kappa None
2006–08 United Kingdom Umbro Silk Way Airlines
2008–09 Germany Puma AZAL
2009–10 Germany Adidas Silk Way
2010–... United Kingdom Umbro

Since its foundation AZAL's traditional home kit is completely blue. For the guest games the team usually wears an all white kit, except 2007–08 season, when Olimpic Baku has worn red-black striped jersey, black shorts and red socks. For the last three years the club's kits are manufactured by Umbro and sponsored by Silk Way Airlines.

Recent domestic league and cup history[edit]

Season Div. Pos. Pl. W D L GS GA P Domestic Cup Top scorer Goals Manager
2004–05 2nd 1 14 10 3 1 25 9 33 1/16 Finals Azerbaijan Garibov
2005–06 1st 12 26 5 8 13 15 27 23 1/8 Finals Serbia Baljak 3 Croatia Čordaš / Serbia Kurčubić
2006–07 1st 6 24 11 8 5 28 17 41 1/8 Finals Azerbaijan Mammadov 13 Azerbaijan A.Abdullayev
2007–08 1st 2 26 17 7 2 29 7 58 Quarterfinals Brazil Junivan 11 Azerbaijan A.Abdullayev
2008–09 1st 6 26 12 8 6 32 18 44 Quarterfinals Azerbaijan Gomes 10 Azerbaijan A.Abdullayev
2009–10 1st 7 42 16 13 13 47 29 61 Semi-finals Moldova Doroş 12 Azerbaijan A.Abdullayev /Azerbaijan Suleymanov
2010–11 1st 4 32 13 10 9 36 28 49 Semi-finals Lithuania Juška 10 Azerbaijan Suleymanov
2011–12 1st 7 32 12 8 12 44 44 44 Quarterfinals Morocco Benouahi 10 Azerbaijan E.Abdullayev / Azerbaijan Mirzayev / Azerbaijan Sadygov
2012–13 1st 7 32 16 9 7 57 32 57 1/8 Finals Brazil Nildo 21 Azerbaijan Sadygov
2013–14 (in progress) 1st 8 27 6 8 13 26 40 26 Second Round United States Oluremi 7 Azerbaijan Sadygov / Azerbaijan Ahmadov

European cup history[edit]

As of 10 February 2013.

Season Competition Round Country Club Home Away Aggregate
2008–09 UEFA Cup Q1 Serbia Vojvodina 1–1 0–1 1–2
2011–12 UEFA Europa League Q1 Belarus Minsk 1–1 1–2 2–3
  • Q = Qualifying

Players[edit]

For a list of all former and current AZAL PFC players with a Wikipedia article, see Category:Olimpik Baku players.

Azerbaijani teams are limited to nine players without Azerbaijani citizenship. The squad list includes only the principal nationality of each player; several non-European players on the squad have dual citizenship with an EU country.

Current squad[edit]

As of 26 August 2014

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
1 Azerbaijan GK Ruslan Majidov
3 Spain DF Juanfran
4 Georgia (country) DF Lasha Kasradze
5 Azerbaijan DF Karim Diniyev
6 Brazil MF Eduardo Conceição
7 Azerbaijan DF Tamkin Khalilzade (loan from Qarabağ)
9 Azerbaijan DF Aydin Gasimov
10 Bulgaria MF Tomi Kostadinov
11 Colombia FW John Córdoba
12 Honduras MF Luis Ramos
13 Azerbaijan MF Shahriyar Rahimov (captain)
14 Azerbaijan DF Asif Mirili
No. Position Player
15 Latvia MF Oskars Kļava
16 Moldova GK Stanislav Namașco
17 Nigeria MF Victor Igbekoi
18 Azerbaijan MF Orkhan Lalayev (on loan from Ravan Baku)
19 Azerbaijan MF Orkhan Safiyaroglu
21 Azerbaijan DF Novruz Mammadov
22 Azerbaijan DF Eltun Yagublu (loan from Qarabağ)
23 Azerbaijan DF Tural Narimanov
25 Azerbaijan DF Adil Nagiyev
27 Azerbaijan MF Rashad Abdullayev
-- Democratic Republic of the Congo FW Freddy Mombongo-Dues

Out on loan[edit]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player

Coaching staff[edit]

Position Staff
Manager Azerbaijan Tarlan Ahmadov
Assistant first team coach Azerbaijan Tofig Mustafayev
Assistant first team coach Azerbaijan Vadar Nuriyev
Goalkeeper coach Azerbaijan Rauf Salamov

Club records[edit]

  • Best position in Azerbaijan Premier League: (2007-08 season) [20]
  • Worst position in Azerbaijan Premier League: 12°(2005-06 season)[21]

As of 26 March 2014

  • Played (all tournaments): 313
  • Won (W): 128
  • Drawn (D): 91
  • Lost (L): 94
  • Goals scored (GS): 345
  • Goals conceded (GC): 281

First competitive matches[edit]

Statistics in European competitions[edit]

As of 26 March 2014

  • Appearances: 2
  • Played: 4
  • Won (W): 0
  • Drawn (D): 2
  • Lost (L): 2
  • Goals scored (GS): 3
  • Goals conceded (GC): 5

Individual records[edit]

Lists of the players with the most caps and top goalscorers for AZAL, as of 15 April 2014 (players in bold signifies current AZAL player):

Khagani Mammadov is one of the top goalscorers for the club.
Top Ten Highest Goalscorers[22]
Player Period Caps Goals
1 Morocco Zouhir Benouahi 2010–13 76 24
2 Brazil Nildo 2012–13 32 21
3 Nigeria Sierra Leone Victor Igbekoi 2009–present 129 21
4 Brazil Junivan Soares 2007–10 50 17
5 Azerbaijan Khagani Mammadov 2006–07 23 13
6 Moldova Anatolie Doroş 2008–09 28 12
7 United States Will John 2013–present 35 11
8 Brazil Tales Schutz 2011–12 22 10
9 Azerbaijan Brazil Leandro Gomes 2008–09 24 10
10 Lithuania Gvidas Juška 2010–11 30 10
Agil Nabiyev is one of the most capped players for the club.
Top Ten Players With Most Appearances
Player Period Caps Goals
1 Azerbaijan Nigeria Nduka Usim 2004–13 208 5
2 Azerbaijan Agil Nabiyev 2006–12 125 0
3 Nigeria Sierra Leone Victor Igbekoi 2009–present 129 21
4 Serbia Dragan Mandić 2006–11 107 1
5 Azerbaijan Jahangir Hasanzade 2009–present 88 0
6 Georgia (country) Nugzar Kvirtia 2009–12 85 6
7 Serbia Branislav Arsenijević 2011- 83 6
8 Morocco Zouhir Benouahi 2010–13 76 24
9 Azerbaijan Tarlan Ahmadov 2006–09 72 1
10 Azerbaijan Elvin Aliyev 2006–11; 2007–08 70 0

Presidential history[edit]

AZAL was founded by former futsal player, currently FIFA licensed Football agent Kamil Mammadov. In 2005, he sold the club to Silk Way Airlines. Since the AZAL PFC has had just two presidents: former general officer Rasul Rasulov and the club's former vice-president Vaqif Gasymov. At the end of 2011, after Gasymov's resign Silk Way Airlines company chairman Zaur Akhundov became the AZAL PFC new president.

 
Name Years
Kamil Mammadov 1996–06
Rasul Rasulov 2006–09
Vaqif Gasymov 2009–12
Zaur Akhundov 2012–

Notable managers[edit]

For more details on this topic, see List of AZAL PFK managers.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "АЗАЛ заявит на Лигу Европы игрока сборной Албании". Retrieved 29 June 2011. 
  2. ^ Futsalplanet
  3. ^ Futsalplanet
  4. ^ "Marko Mitroviç: "Çox şadam ki, Azərbaycanda futbol oynamışam"". Rekord.az. Retrieved 2012-11-17. 
  5. ^ Главный тренер футбольного клуба «Олимпик»: «До сих пор не могу понять, как мы упустили чемпионство» (Russian)
  6. ^ Азербайджанский "Олимпик" уступил "Войводине" (Russian)
  7. ^ “Olimpik” club to be renamed[dead link]
  8. ^ ФК "Олимпик" переименован[dead link] (Russian)
  9. ^ "Nazim Süleymanov "Olimpik-Şüvəlan" futbol klubunun baş məşqçisi oldu". Azeroo.com. Retrieved 2012-11-17. 
  10. ^ "Olimpik-Şüvəlan" adını dəyişib, AZAL oldu (Azerbaijani)
  11. ^ АЗАЛ в премьер-лиге (Russian)
  12. ^ "Nazim Süleymanov: "AZAL "Minsk"i keçə bilməsə, istefaya getməyə hazıram"". Retrieved 29 June 2011. 
  13. ^ "Nazim Suleymanov AZAL-ın baş məşqçiliyindən istefa verdi". Retrieved 8 July 2011. 
  14. ^ "Elxan Abdullyev: "AZAL-da bəzi "viruslar" var"". Retrieved 2 November 2011. 
  15. ^ "AZAL-a yeni baş məşqçi təyin edildi". Retrieved 29 December 2011. 
  16. ^ "AZAL-ın yeni baş məşqçisi Vaqif Sadıqov oldu". Retrieved 6 April 2012. 
  17. ^ "AZAL PFK". Soccerway. 
  18. ^ "Вагиф САДЫХОВ: Бюджет АЗАЛ урезан на 2,5 раза, но цели не изменятся". Day.az (in Russian). Retrieved 21 June 2013. 
  19. ^ AZAL-ın yeni loqosu hazırlandı (Azerbaijani)
  20. ^ "Azerbaijan 2007-08". 
  21. ^ "Azerbaijan 2005-06". 
  22. ^ "Milli komanda-20: Bütün bombardirlər". Apasport.az (in Azerbaijani). Retrieved 17 September 2012. 

External links[edit]