|Full name||Klubi Sportiv Besa Kavajë|
|Founded||October 23, 1925
as Shoqata Sportive Adriatiku
|Ground||Besa Stadium, Kavajë, Albania|
|2012–13||Albanian Superliga, 9th|
KS BESA is an Albanian sports club based in Kavajë. Its football team currently plays in the Albanian Superliga, the top tier of Albanian football. They were founded in 1925 and play their home games at Besa Stadium.
Early years (1925-1944)
Klubi Sportiv Besa was founded on 23 October 1925 originally as "Shoqata Kulturore-Sportive Adriatiku", which was a multi-disciplinary sports club based in Kavajë, Albania. In 1930 the club changed its name to "Sport Klub Kavaja", also known as "Besa Sport Klub", derived from Besa, the Albanian cultural precept meaning "to keep the promise" and "word of honor".
The first football friendly was played at Mali i Robit, Golem against an amateur team formed of students from the Albanian-American Institute of Agriculture. In 1930 the club joined the newly formed Albanian Football Association and participated in the 1930 second tier championship, where they would repeat their participation for the next two seasons before joining the top tier Kategoria e Parë in 1933. In their first top flight championship KS Kavaja finished last in the 5 team league, losing 7 games and winning just one, a 2-1 victory over local rivals Teuta Durrës.
In 1935 the club took the shape of an organised one under the leadership of the chairman Irfan Berati. The vice-chairman was Fehmi Kazazi, the secretary was Dervish Cara, the committee members were Sulejman Karkini and Reshat Asllani, the cashier was Rasim Sulejmani and Dhori Fora was in charge of the trade of craft.
During World War II many members of the club lost their lives as soldiers, including Mehmet Babamusta, Adil Alushi, Sami Karriqi and Millan Radosalja. Also, during the war period the activities of the club became very limited and it was supported primarily by the local residents of Kavajë. During this period there were no official competitions held in Albania.
But between 1945 and 1950 the club experienced a revival which was due to young talented players coming through the ranks of the youth teams, including the likes of Qamil Teliti who went on to receive national success. During the 1945-46 season the club won the unofficial Sports Federation President's Cup. Many of the club's players during the late 40s would go on to play for the Albanian national team, including Qamil Teliti, who scored the winning goal against Romania that won Albania the 1946 Balkan Cup.
In 1958 the club achieved second place in top tier Albanian Championship, narrowly losing out to Partizani Tirana for the title by one point. Also during the 1958 season they reached the semi final of the Albanian Cup, against losing out to eventual winners Partizani Tirana. The club would go on to reach the finals of the Albanian Cup in 1961, losing to Partizani Tirana once again and also the following season in 1962-63, where they lost on penalties to KF Tirana. Also in 1963 they won the unofficial cup competition held by the 'Sport' newspaper, and in 1965 they won the 'Bashkimi' newspaper competition.
Golden generation (1965-1975)
The period between 1965 and 1975 has been called the golden generation of football in Kavajë, due to the domestic achievements especially in the Albanian Cup which resulted in the club's first ever European games. In 1971 they finished as runners-up in the Albanian Cup after losing 2-0 in the finals to Dinamo Tirana. They repeated this feat the following year, losing on penalties in the final of the cup following a 2-2 draw with Vllaznia Shkodër, but as Vllaznia also won the league in the same year this gave Besa the opportunity to participate in the UEFA Cup Winners' Cup in the 1972-73 season.
Their first European opponents were Danish side, Fremad Amager, who Besa managed to overcome on away goals following a 1-1 draw away in Copenhagen and a goal less draw at home. In the next round however they were beaten by Scottish side Hibernian, who they lost 8-2 on aggregate to, following a 7-1 away loss and 1-1 draw at home. The end of the golden generation era was marked with the completion of the club's first purpose built stadium, named the Besa Stadium. It was built in 1974 with a capacity of 9000 spectators.
Besa confirmed their place in the 2007–08 UEFA Cup after a 3-2 win against neighbours KS Teuta in the 2006–07 Albanian Cup final. They met Bežanija of Serbia in the first qualifying round, drawing 2-2 away and 0-0 at home to progress on away goals. In the second qualifying round they fell 3-0 in each leg to Bulgarian side Litex Lovech. In 2008, they qualified for the Intertoto Cup due to their third-place finish in the league, drawing Ethnikos Achna 0-0 at home and 1-1 in Cyprus and continued on away goals. In the 2nd round of the Intertoto cup they were eliminated by Grasshopper Zürich from Switzerland.
- Official Kit Sponsor: Sportika
- Official Sponsor: Veneto Banka
Besa in European Competitions
As of July 2010
|1972–73||UEFA Cup Winners' Cup||1R||Fremad Amager||0–0||1–1|
|2008–09||UEFA Intertoto Cup||1R||Ethnikos Achna||0–0||1–1|
|2010–11||UEFA Europa League||2R||Olympiacos||0–5||1–6|
- 1QR = 1st Qualifying Round
- 2QR = 2nd Qualifying Round
- 1R = 1st Round
- 2R = 2nd Round
- 3R = 3rd Round
Note: Flags indicate national team as has been defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.
- Shkëlqim Muça (July 1, 1998–June 30, 1999)
- Sulejman Starova (Dec 3, 2007–April 7, 2008)
- Shpëtim Duro (July 1, 2009–Sept 19, 2010)
- Përparim Daiu (April 1, 2010–May 1, 2010), (Sept 21, 2010–Nov 6, 2010)
- Gerd Haxhiu (Nov 8, 2010–June 30, 2012)
- Gugash Magani (July 25, 2011–June 30, 2012)
- Ilir Daja (July 1, 2012–Feb 18, 2013)
- Përparim Daiu (Feb 19, 2013–May 20, 2013)
- Ramadan Shehu (July 9, 2013–Aug 28, 2013)
- Artan Mërgjyshi (Aug 29, 2013–)