|Full name||Elis Ermal Bakaj|
|Date of birth||25 June 1987|
|Place of birth||Tirana, Albania|
|Height||1.75 m (5 ft 9 in)|
|Playing position||Attacking midfielder
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 29 October 2014.
† Appearances (Goals).
Bakaj began his career as a youth player for KF Kristali, before moving to Partizani Tirana. In 2002, he started his professional career with Partizani, playing until 2009 before moving to rivals of Dinamo Tirana. After playing with them for two years, he moved outside of Albania and signed with romanian club Dinamo Bucureşti. After one season with White and Reds, he moved in Ukraine and signed with Chornomorets Odessa. Due to the civil unrest caused by the 2014 Ukrainian revolution, Bakaj return in Albania and signed with KF Tirana, his third club inside of Tirana.
A international footballer for Albania since 2008, Bakaj has earned over 25 caps for his country. He debuted in 2008 and scored his first goal with Red and Blacks four years later.
Bakaj joined his first club KF Kristali in May 1996 at the age of just eight, where he would only remain until October. Despite only playing for the club less than six months, he still managed to be named the player of the year in the youth league.
For the next six months, Elis was trained personally by former Albanian international and Dinamo Tirana player Andrea Marko. In June 1997 he joined Partizani Tirana under the guidance of coach Gazmend Kraja, where he worked his way up the ranks of the club, where he amazed the club, including its president Albert Xhani, who in January 2002 sent Bakaj into the club's senior side.
He joined Partizani's first team at the age of just 15 in January 2002 on a seven-year contract with a minimal wage of just 150,000 Lekë a season. His official Partizani debut came in the 2003 Intertoto Cup against Israeli side Maccabi Netanya, where coach Perlat Musta played Bakaj in the final seven minutes of the game.
In September 2003, Partizani's new coach Ilir Spahiu sendt Bakaj on loan to FC Nacionali, a Partizani feeder team playing in the Albanian Second Division. The Nacionali coach Genci Tomorri gave Bakaj the opportunity of regular first team football, allowing the youngster to show his talent and score goals. In January 2004 his loan was ended and he returned to Partizani where the previous coach Spahiu had left and Sulejman Mema had now took charge.
Bakaj's first senior Partizani goal came on 24 March 2004 in the Albanian Cup quarter finals against KF Elbasani, where he scored the winning goal in the 74th minute to send his side through to the semi finals in a season where Partizani eventually won the Albanian Cup.
In January 2011, in the last hours just before the expiration of the winter transfer window, Bakaj moved to Dinamo Bucureşti. He signed a contract for five years with the Romanian team. The Albanian squad accepted the offer of €200,000 because he entered the final six months of his contract. He was recommended to Dinamo Bucureşti by their former glory, the Albanian star Sulejman Demollari, who played for the Bucharest team between 1991 and 1995 and scored 36 goals in 100 games.
His first goal for Dinamo was scored on 12 April 2011, in a game against Unirea Urziceni.
KF Skënderbeu Korçë
Due to the civil unrest caused by the 2014 Ukrainian revolution, Bakaj agreed to be released from his contract with Chornomorets Odessa as he looked for a return to Albania. He was reportedly close to signing with his first club Partizani Tirana but a deal was not agreed so he joined KF Skënderbeu Korçë on 9 June 2014, pending FIFA clearance.
Without playing a single minute for Skënderbeu Korçë, Bakaj signed for KF Tirana on 19 July 2014, a 2-years contract, where he was considered as an reinforcement for the club managed by Gugash Magani. Bakaj made it his first debut for Tirana on 24 August 2014, a debut which brought his first goal as well, as he played as a starter in the opening match of the 2014–15 season against Apolonia Fier and scored the opening goal in the 24th minute of the match which finished in the 3–0 victory. In second match of the season against Flamurtari, he give the cross that forced goalkepper Ilion Lika to made a mistake and to score an owngoal, giving Tirana a 1–0 win at Qemal Stafa Stadium.
In fourth match against KS Elbasani, he got a red card in the 91st minute after insulting referee Klajdi Kola; However, Tirana won the match in last minute after a goal scored by international player Debatik Curri in the 94th minute. After the match, Disciplinary Commission of Albanian Football Association baned Bakaj for two matches, that means he would miss next league match against Laçi and first leg of first round in 2014–15 Albanian Cup against Sopoti Librazhd. He made his return with Tirana in Tirana derby I against his former club Partizani, playing full 90 minutes in a goalless draw at Qemal Stafa Stadium. On 18 October 2014, Bakaj scored his second goal of the season, a spectacular overhead kick in a 3–1 win against Kukësi at Qemal Stafa Stadium, helping Tirana to take the lead of league. In the second leg of first round in 2014–15 Albanian Cup against Sopoti Librazhd, Bakaj scored the only goal from outside the zone in a 1–1 draw at Selman Stërmasi Stadium, helping the team to qualify in second round where they will face Bylis Ballsh. This match was his debut in Albanian Cup with Tirana.
Bakaj was member of the Albania national football team and made it his debut on 21 November 2007 against Romania in a Euro 2008 Qualifier. Bakaj came on as a substitute in the 83rd minute for Erjon Bogdani.
|1||22 May 2012||Campo de Fútbol de Vallecas, Madrid, Spain||Qatar||1–0||2–1 (Win)||Friendly|
- As of 29 October 2014
- Partizani Tirana
- Dinamo Tirana
- Albanian Superliga (1): 2009–10
- Albanian Superleague Footballer of the Year (2): 2009, 2010
- Dinamo Tirana Player of the Season (1): 2009–10
- Dinamo Tirana Goal of the Season (2): 2009–10, 2010–11
- "Elis Bakaj Bio" (in Albanian). Bakaj19.com. Retrieved 3 September 2011.
- TRANSFER. Elis Bakaj la Dinamo!
- Bakaj te Dinamo Bukuresht per 200 mije euro
- Elis Bakaj dodges fling firecracker during Romanian cup final
- Элис Бакай стал «моряком»
- Ngarkime Celulari - K.F Skenderbeu Korce - Facebook
- Balkanweb.com - Bakaj firmos me Tiranën: Ka një projekt ambicioz - Sport
- Tirana vs. Apolonia Fier - 24 August 2014 - Soccerway
- "K. Superiore, Tirana shkëlqen në start". Super Sport Albania. 24 August 2014. Retrieved 24 August 2014.
- Merko, Adela (31 August 2014). "Grushte kartonë të kuq, Ilion Lika “nderon” Tiranën. Magani: Po, ishte një fitore me fat". Panorama Sport. Retrieved 18 October 2014.
- "Elis Bakaj doli me të kuqe, ofendoi gjyqtarin". Panorama Sport. 15 September 2014. Retrieved 18 October 2014.
- Merko, Adela (15 September 2014). "Fitore me drithërima, Tirana i falet Currit. Magani: E merituam, fitorja na ngjiti të parët". Panorama Sport. Retrieved 18 October 2014.
- "Disiplina gjobit dhe pezullon 2 ndeshje Elis Bakajn". Panorama Sport. 17 September 2014. Retrieved 18 October 2014.
- "Ndaj Partizanit kthehet Curri dhe Bakaj". Panorama Sport. 23 September 2014. Retrieved 18 October 2014.
- "Tirana shpreson faljen, përgatit… sheshin. Ndaj Partizanit kthehet Curri dhe Elis Bakaj". Panorama Sport. 24 September 2014. Retrieved 18 October 2014.
- "Tirana dhe Partizani, paqe në derbin e… “mëkateve”. Bulku: Sulmi ynë u furnizua pak". Panorama Sport. 27 September 2014. Retrieved 18 October 2014.
- "Fitore me supergola, Tirana merr kreun". Panorama Sport. 20 October 2014. Retrieved 20 October 2014.
- "Kualifikohet Tirana, Bakaj shmang humbjen". Panorama Sport. 23 October 2014. Retrieved 23 October 2014.
- Albania defeat Qatar in friendly
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