Saudi Professional League

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Saudi Professional League
Saudi Professional League Logo.png
Country Saudi Arabia
Confederation AFC
Founded 1976
Number of teams 14
Level on pyramid 1
Relegation to Saudi First Division
Domestic cup(s) Saudi Champions Cup
Saudi Crown Prince Cup
International cup(s) AFC Champions League
Current champions Al-Nassr 6 titles
(2013–14)
Most championships Al-Hilal (13 titles)
TV partners MBC Sports
Website www.spl.com.sa
2014–15 season

The Saudi Professional League, officially known as (Arabic: دوري المحترفين السعودي‎), is the top division of football in Saudi Arabia.

The first season of the competition was held in 1976–77, [1] in which it was won by Al-Hilal. Al-Hilal are the most successful team with 13 titles, while Al-Nassr is the current title-holder (2013–14).

The league is also known for sponsorship reasons as Abdul Latif Jameel League, named after the sponsor Abdul Latif Jameel Group.

History[edit]

Up until the late seventies, football in Saudi Arabia was organized on a regional basis, with the only nationwide tournament being King Cup of Champions. In 1976 it was deemed that local football, and transportation links, have improved sufficiently to organize a national league. Hence the Saudi League was launched with 16 clubs participating, and only 8 of them surviving in the next season. This decision was made in order to decide who relegates to the first division, and who rightfully stays on the premier league.

In 1981 it was decided to increase the number of clubs and add a second division. The league competition for the 1981–82, known as the ranking league, featured 18 clubs with the top eight qualifying for the first division and the bottom ten to the new second division. The number of first division clubs was later increased to 12 in the 1984–85 season.

In 1990 it was decided to revamp local competitions and to introduce professional football. A new league championship was formed called "The Custodian of The Two Holy Mosques League Cup", which was a two-stage championship. The first stage was a regular double round-robin league competition with the top 4 qualifying to the final knockout stage, called the golden square. Clubs were allowed to sign players on a professional basis making the league semi professional.

In 2007 It was decided to split the two stages, with the league reverting to a standard double round-robin competition, and a new domestic competition cup competition formed called "The Custodian of The Two Holy Mosques Champions Cup". This cup will feature the top six finishers in the league plus the winners of the Crown Prince Cup and the Prince Faisal Cup. This format will take effect from the 2007–08 season onwards.

Qualification and prize money[edit]

As of 2008 four teams from Saudi Arabia qualify for the AFC Asian Champions League annually. This includes the top three teams of the AJL together with the winner of the King cup. If the winner of the King Cup is also among the three top AJL teams then the fourth best AJL team also qualifies.

Prize money:

  • First place: 26,990,000 Saudi Riyals
  • Second place: 24,245,000 Saudi Riyals
  • Third place: 22,300,000 Saudi Riyals
  • Fourth place: 20,355,000 Saudi Riyals

(Note, all clubs in the Saudi Professional League receive prize money depending on their rank.)

List of teams (2014–15 season)[edit]

Locations of teams in the 2014–15 Saudi Professional League
Club Location Stadium Capacity
Al-Ahli Jeddah al-Jawhara Stadium 62,241
Al-Faisaly Harmah King Salman Bin Abdulaziz Sport City Stadium 7,000
Al-Fateh Al-Hasa Prince Abdullah bin Jalawi Stadium 20,000
Al-Hilal Riyadh Addurra Stadium 68,752
Al-Malaz Stadium 22,500
Al-Ittihad Jeddah al-Jawhara Stadium 62,241
Al-Khaleej Saihat Prince Mohamed bin Fahd Stadium 35,000
Al Nassr Riyadh Addurra Stadium 68,752
Al-Malaz Stadium 22,500
Al-Oruba Sakakah Al-Oruba Club Stadium 8,000
Al Raed Buraydah King Abdullah Sport City Stadium 25,000
Al-Shabab Riyadh Addurra Stadium 68,752
Al-Malaz Stadium 22,500
Al-Shoalah Al Kharj Al-Shoalah Club Stadium 8,000
Al Taawon Buraydah King Abdullah Sport City Stadium 25,000
Hajer Al-Hasa Prince Abdullah bin Jalawi Stadium 20,000
Najran Najran Al Akhdoud Club Stadium 3,200

List of champions[edit]

No. Season Champion
1 1976–77 Al-Hilal
2 1977–78 Al-Ahli
3 1978–79 Al-Hilal
4 1979–80 Al-Nassr
5 1980–81 Al-Nassr
6 1981–82 Al-Ittihad
7 1982–83 Al-Ettifaq
8 1983–84 Al-Ahli
9 1984–85 Al-Hilal
10 1985–86 Al-Hilal
11 1986–87 Al-Ettifaq
12 1987–88 Al-Hilal
13 1988–89 Al-Nassr
14 1989–90 Al-Hilal
15 1990–91 Al-Shabab
16 1991–92 Al-Shabab
17 1992–93 Al-Shabab
18 1993–94 Al-Nassr
19 1994–95 Al-Nassr
No. Season Champion
20 1995–96 Al-Hilal
21 1996–97 Al-Ittihad
22 1997–98 Al-Hilal
23 1998–99 Al-Ittihad
24 1999–2000 Al-Ittihad
25 2000–01 Al-Ittihad
26 2001–02 Al-Hilal
27 2002–03 Al-Ittihad
28 2003–04 Al-Shabab
29 2004–05 Al-Hilal
30 2005–06 Al-Shabab
31 2006–07 Al-Ittihad
32 2007–08 Al-Hilal
33 2008–09 Al-Ittihad
34 2009–10 Al-Hilal
35 2010–11 Al-Hilal
36 2011–12 Al-Shabab
37 2012–13 Al-Fateh
38 2013–14 Al-Nassr

Performance by club[edit]

Most successful clubs[edit]

No. Club Winners Runners-up Winning Years
1 Al-Hilal [2]
13
12
1976–77, 1978–79, 1984–85, 1985–86, 1987–88, 1989–90, 1995–96, 1997–98, 2001–02, 2004–05, 2007–08, 2009–10, 2010–11
2 Al-Ittihad [3]
8
8
1981–82, 1996–97, 1998–99, 1999–00, 2000–01, 2002–03, 2006–07, 2008–09
3 Al-Nassr [4]
6
5
1979–80, 1980–81, 1988–89, 1993–94, 1994–95, 2013–14
4 Al-Shabab
6
5
1990–91, 1991–92, 1992–93, 2003–04, 2005–06, 2011–12
5 Al-Ahli
2
6
1977–78, 1983–84
6 Al-Ettifaq
2
2
1982–83, 1986–87
7 Al-Fateh
1
0
2012–13

Total titles won by town or city[edit]

Town or city Number of titles Clubs
Riyadh
25
Al-Hilal (13), Al-Nassr (6), Al-Shabab (6)
Jeddah
10
Al-Ittihad (8), Al-Ahli (2)
Dammam
2
Al-Ettifaq (2)
Al-Hasa
1
Al-Fateh (1)

Topscorers[edit]

Year Best scorers Team Goals
1976–77 Saudi Arabia Nasser Eid Al-Qadisiya 12
1977–78 Saudi Arabia Motamad Khojali Al-Ahli 14
1978–79 Saudi Arabia Majed Abdullah Al-Nassr 18
1979–80 Saudi Arabia Majed Abdullah Al-Nassr 17
1980–81 Saudi Arabia Majed Abdullah Al-Nassr 21
1981–82 Saudi Arabia Khalid Al-Ma'ajil Al-Shabab 22
1982–83 Saudi Arabia Majed Abdullah Al-Nassr 14
1983–84 Saudi Arabia Hussam Abu Dawood Al-Ahli 14
1984–85 Saudi Arabia Hathal Dosari Al-Hilal 15
1985–86 Saudi Arabia Majed Abdullah Al-Nassr 15
1986–87 Saudi Arabia Mohammad Suwaidi Al-Ittihad 17
1987–88 Saudi Arabia Khalid Al-Ma'ajil Al-Shabab 12
1988–89 Saudi Arabia Majed Abdullah Al-Nassr 19
1989–90 Saudi Arabia Sami Al-Jaber Al-Hilal 16
1990–91 Saudi Arabia Fahad Al-Mehallel Al-Shabab 20
1991–92 Saudi Arabia Saeed Al-Owairan Al-Shabab 16
1992–93 Saudi Arabia Sami Al-Jaber Al-Hilal 18
1993–94 Senegal Moussa Ndao Al-Hilal 15
1994–95 Saudi Arabia Fahd Al-Hamdan Al-Riyadh 15
1995–96 Ghana Ohene Kennedy Al-Nassr 14
1996–97 Morocco Ahmed Bahja Al-Ittihad 21
1997–98 Saudi Arabia Sulaiman Al-Hadaithy Al-Najma 15
1998–99 Saudi Arabia Obeid Al-Dosari Al-Wahda 20
1999–2000 Saudi Arabia Hamzah Idris Al-Ittihad 33
2000–01 Angola Paulo Da Silva Al-Ettifaq 13
2001–02 Senegal Dane Valle Al-Riyadh 10
2002–03 Ecuador Carlos Tenorio Al-Nassr 15
2003–04 Ghana Godwin Attram Al-Shabab 15
2004–05 Brazil Sergio Ricardo Al-Ittihad 15
2005–06 Saudi Arabia Essa Al-Mehyani Al-Wahda 16
2006–07 Ghana Godwin Attram Al-Shabab 13
2007–08 Saudi Arabia Nasser Al-Shamrani Al-Shabab 18
2008–09 Saudi Arabia
Morocco
Nasser Al-Shamrani
Hicham Aboucherouane
Al-Shabab
Al-Ittihad
12
2009–10 Saudi Arabia Mohammad Al-Shalhoub Al-Hilal 12
2010–11 Saudi Arabia Nasser Al-Shamrani Al-Shabab 17
2011–12 Saudi Arabia
Brazil
Nasser Al-Shamrani
Victor Simões
Al-Shabab
Al-Ahli
21
2012–13 Argentina Sebastián Tagliabué Al-Shabab 19
2013–14 Saudi Arabia Nasser Al-Shamrani Al-Hilal 21

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]