Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya (Arabic: نادي القوة الجوية الرياضي, lit.'Air Force Sports Club') is an Iraqi sports club based in Rusafa District, Baghdad that competes in the Iraq Stars League, the top-flight of Iraqi football. Founded in 1931, it is the oldest existing club in Iraq.[1]

Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya
Full nameAl-Quwa Al-Jawiya
(Air Force Sports Club)
Nickname(s)Al-Soqoor (The Falcons)
Al-Areeq (The Deep-Rooted)
Founded4 July 1931; 92 years ago (4 July 1931) as Gipsy Moth
GroundAl-Madina Stadium (league)
Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya Stadium (cup)
Capacity32,000 (league)
6,000 (cup)
PresidentShihab Jahid
ManagerAyoub Odisho
LeagueIraq Stars League
2022–23Iraqi Premier League, 2nd of 20

Its football team is one of the most successful in Iraq, having won seven Iraq Stars League titles, most recently in the 2020–21 season, while they won their sixth Iraq FA Cup title in 2023. The club also won a joint-record three Umm al-Ma'arik Championships as well as two Iraqi Super Cups, and in the 1996–97 season became the first of only two clubs to win all four major national trophies in the same season.

On the continental level, Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya are joint-record winners of the AFC Cup, Asia's second-tier club competition, having become the first club to win three consecutive titles in 2016, 2017 and 2018. They have also participated in the group stage of the AFC Champions League on six occasions.

History

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On 4 July 1931, 73 days after the foundation of the Iraqi Air Force, the club was founded by a group of Iraqi flight policemen at the British Royal Air Force station of RAF Hinaidi, making it the oldest existing football club in Iraq. The club was named Gipsy Moth after the model of the first fleet of the Iraqi Air Force, but soon the club was renamed to Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya Al-Malakiya, simply meaning Royal Air Force. Dressed in army fatigues and short khakis, they played their very first game a day later against a team from RAF Habbaniya and won the match. The win over the British forces helped the club grow in popularity as many Iraqis began supporting the club as its reputation spread across the nation.[2]

As the British forces and its leaders saw that the club's activities had broadened and its members and followers had multiplied which was clearly seen in the matches they played in, the British wanted to get rid of some of its leaders, but King Ghazi, who took over as ruler of Iraq in 1933, had a strong relationship with the Iraqi flight policemen and he invited the members to have talks to solve the problem. It was not long before a solution for the development of the club had been decided on and they came under the control of another branch of the Iraqi Air Force, which opened a number of doors for the club around areas in Iraq. They won their first trophy on 19 May 1933, defeating Al-Lasilki 1–0 after extra time in the final of the Prince Ghazi Cup, thanks to a goal by Nasser Hussein, wearing the colours of green and purple.[3] Jawiya and Al-Haras Al-Malaki (meaning Royal Guard) became close rivals with the two teams regularly competing for the Iraq Central FA Premier League title (a league for teams in Baghdad and its neighbouring cities). This league competition started in 1948 and continued all the way until 1973 when the Central FA Premier League and other regional leagues were replaced by the Iraqi National First Division.[4][5][6]

 
Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya being awarded the Iraq Central FA Altruism Cup trophy in 1964.

Jawiya were one of the six teams to compete in the 1956–57 season which saw a double-elimination format introduced for the first time. In 1957, Jawiya completed the signing of Ammo Baba, one of the best players in Iraqi football history, and won their first league title in Ammo's first season at the club in 1957–58, after Al-Shorta Select XI withdrew from the replay of the final. Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya Al-Malakiya were renamed to Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya (Air Force) when Iraq became a republic in 1958. The 1959–60 season saw Jawiya reach the final of the league again, but they lost 3–0 to Al-Athori.[7] Jawiya secured their second league title in the 1961–62 season as the league changed to a round-robin format. This qualified them for the 1962 Iraq Central FA Altruism Cup (later known as Iraq Central FA Perseverance Cup) which they won by defeating Al-Kuliya Al-Askariya 4–2. Jawiya won the league title again in 1963–64 and also won the Iraq Central FA Altruism Cup again that year. They were once managed by Scotsman Frank Hill in the fifties, a player at Arsenal and manager at Notts County and Charlton Athletic – attempting on two separate occasions to sign Jawiya's star inside forward Ammo Baba. They had another British link as the team featured former Bristol Rovers reserve Youra Eshaya who went on to become one of the longest-serving players at the club from 1955 to 1971.[8] Jawiya claimed their fourth title in 1972–73, winning the league with a 100% win record (seven wins from seven games).[citation needed]

The club continued their strong form and won the country's new nationwide league in the 1973–74 season. That season, Jawiya also won the first and only edition of the Iraq FA Baghdad Cup, a knockout tournament played between 20 teams from Baghdad and its neighbouring cities, by beating Al-Sikak Al-Hadeed 2–1 in the final. In 1974, the Iraq Football Association decided to form the Iraqi Premier League (then known as the Iraqi National Clubs League) which was only open to clubs rather than institute-representative teams, resulting in the club changing their name from Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya to Al-Tayaran (Airlines). The first ever edition of the Iraqi Premier League in the 1974–75 season saw Al-Tayaran claim the title, finishing just a single point above runners-up Al-Naqil, meaning they had won three league titles in a row (one Central FA First Division, one National First Division and one National Clubs League). All three titles were won under the management of Abdelilah Mohammed Hassan. Al-Tayaran won their first Iraq FA Cup title by beating Al-Shorta 5–3 on penalties in the 1978 final after a 1–1 draw, with Nadhum Shaker scoring the winning penalty.[citation needed]

In the 1989–90 season, Al-Tayaran managed to get their second Premier League title, known as the National Clubs League at the time. They finished four points ahead of defending champions Al-Rasheed. 12 goals from Natiq Hashim were crucial in winning Amer Jamil's Al-Tayaran the title. Midway through the 1990–91 season, on 20 April 1991, the Ministry of Interior decided to dissolve all the clubs that were under its control including Al-Bahri (Navy Club), Al-Jaish (Army Club) and Al-Tayaran. However, after immense pressure from supporters of the club, Al-Tayaran returned to action on 12 May 1991, but returned to their old name of Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya. The 1991–92 season saw Jawiya win their first ever national Double and goes down as one of the most successful seasons in the club's history. Managed by Adil Yousef, Jawiya claimed the title on the very last day of the season, defeating Al-Zawraa 1–0 in their last game thanks to an early goal by their top scorer Akram Emmanuel to overtake their opponents and claim the trophy. The game was controversial as Al-Zawraa scored a goal through Laith Hussein that was ruled out for offside; had the goal counted, Al-Zawraa would have retained their title. Jawiya coupled their league success with their second FA Cup win, defeating Al-Khutoot 2–1 in the cup final. Jawiya managed to win their first Umm al-Ma'arik Championship title in the 1994–95 season with a penalty shootout win over Al-Talaba after the game ended goalless.[citation needed]

Jawiya, under the leadership of Ayoub Odisho, started the 1996–97 season by winning the Umm al-Ma'arik Championship. Jawiya also managed to win the Iraqi Premier League with 22 wins from 30 games with their top scorer being Sabah Jeayer. Four days before clinching the league title, Jawiya won their third Iraq FA Cup with a penalty shootout victory against Al-Shorta in front of 50,000 spectators at Al-Shaab Stadium. Jawiya became history-makers by winning the Iraqi Super Cup 3–1 against Al-Zawraa at the end of the season to become the first team in Iraqi football history to win all four major domestic trophies in a single season. The joy of the 1996–97 campaign was followed by a heartbreaking 1997–98 season. Jawiya conceded a 97th-minute equalising penalty to Al-Zawraa in the 1998 Iraq FA Cup final and lost the ensuing penalty shootout. Jawiya then drew 1–1 against Al-Zawraa in their last league match of the season, and missed out on the title to Al-Shorta after Al-Shorta scored a 91st-minute winning penalty in their match against Al-Sulaikh. Jawiya players mistakenly thought that Al-Shorta had drawn their match which would have made them champions and they began celebrating on the field, with Ayoub Odisho giving an interview on live television. Midway through Odisho's interview, the stadium announcer declared that the final score of Al-Shorta's game was 3–2 and that Al-Shorta were officially the champions of Iraq.[citation needed]

Jawiya clinched their third Umm al-Ma'arik Championship title in the 1998–99 season by beating Al-Naft in the final. Jawiya also managed to win the 2001 Iraqi Super Cup against Al-Zawraa with a 1–0 win. In 2003 the club briefly changed their name back to Al-Tayaran before returning to the name Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya again. Jawiya entered the 2004–05 season in search of a fifth Premier League title, and they managed to achieve it by beating Al-Minaa 2–0 in the final coached by Sabah Abdul-Jalil. In the 2006–07 season, Jawiya reached the final of the league again but lost it to hosts Erbil by a score of 1–0. Their position as league runners-up qualified them for the 2008 AFC Champions League but they exited at the group stage for the third time in a row. In the 2014–15 campaign, Jawiya qualified for the league final where they played newly promoted Naft Al-Wasat, and lost on penalties after a goalless draw. Jawiya won the 2015–16 Iraq FA Cup by defeating rivals Al-Zawraa 2–0, thus denying their opponents the Double.[9]

By finishing as runners-up of the 2014–15 league, Jawiya qualified for the 2016 AFC Cup,[10] Asia's second-tier club tournament. They reached the 2016 AFC Cup Final, where Hammadi Ahmad scored the only goal of the game against Indian side Bengaluru to become the first Iraqi club to win the AFC Cup and claim their first ever major continental trophy.[11] Jawiya then went on to win the 2016–17 Iraqi Premier League, their sixth Premier League title, under the helm of Basim Qasim.[12] They rounded off the season by winning their second consecutive AFC Cup, this time beating FC Istiklol 1–0 in the final. They then became the first team in history to win the AFC Cup three times in a row with a 2–0 win over Altyn Asyr in the 2018 final, and clinched their seventh Premier League title in the 2020–21 season under Ayoub Odisho, coupling it with the 2020–21 Iraq FA Cup title to earn their third national double.[citation needed]

Stadium

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Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya's stadium is located in Baghdad, near Falastin Street, opposite the former stadium site of their rivals Al-Shorta. It has a capacity of 6,000. The seats are light blue in colour.[citation needed]

Kits

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Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya's home kit is blue with white trimmings, while their away kit is yellow with blue trimmings.[citation needed]

Rivalries

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Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya's main rivals are Al-Zawraa, with whom they contest the Iraqi El Clásico. Jawiya also share a rivalry with Al-Shorta and Al-Talaba.[13] There also exists a rivalry between Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya and Al-Minaa, which is sometimes called the Al-Araqa derby, because the two clubs are the oldest clubs in Iraq.[14][15]

Supporters

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Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya are one of the traditional "Big Four" of Baghdad and thus have a large fanbase, concentrated mainly in Iraq's capital.[citation needed]

Current squad

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As of 30 May 2024

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

No. Pos. Nation Player
2 DF   TUN Ghaith Maaroufi
4 DF   IRQ Saad Natiq
5 MF   IRQ Youssef Fawzi
6 DF   IRQ Sameh Saeed
7 FW   IRQ Shareef Abdul-Kadhim
8 MF   IRQ Ibrahim Bayesh (vice-captain)
9 FW   IRQ Aymen Hussein
10 FW   IRQ Ali Jasim (on loan from Al-Kahrabaa)
11 MF   IRQ Humam Tariq (captain)
12 GK   IRQ Mohammed Shakir
13 MF   TOG Franco Atchou
14 FW   IRQ Hussein Jabbar
15 MF   RWA Djabel Manishimwe
16 MF   IRQ Shihab Razzaq
17 DF   IRQ Mustafa Saadoon
No. Pos. Nation Player
20 GK   IRQ Mohammed Hameed
24 DF   IRQ Hassan Raed
25 MF   IRQ Saad Abdul-Amir
29 DF   BOL Pablo Pedraza
30 DF   IRQ Mustafa Waleed
33 GK   IRQ Mustafa Bassim
34 GK   IRQ Ali Khalid
38 DF   ARG Hugo Silva
44 DF   IRQ Hammoud Mishaan
48 DF   IRQ Ruslan Hanoon
66 DF   IRQ Mohammed Al-Baqir
77 FW   YEM Ahmed Al-Sarori
88 FW   IRQ Mohannad Abdul-Raheem
MF   COL Ronny Rodríguez

Out on loan

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

No. Pos. Nation Player
31 DF   IRQ Ali Hassan (on loan at Al-Qasim until the end of the 2022–23 season)
FW   IRQ Saif Rashed (on loan at Newroz until the end of the 2022–23 season)
FW   IRQ Abbas Ali (on loan at Samarra until the end of the 2022–23 season)
MF   IRQ Ali Mohammed Jaber (on loan at Al-Diwaniya until the end of the 2022–23 season)
FW   IRQ Maitham Waad (on loan at Al-Sinaa until the end of the 2022–23 season)
FW   IRQ Abbas Jassim (on loan at Al-Kahrabaa until the end of the 2022–23 season)

Managers

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Current technical staff

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Position Name Nationality
Manager: Ayoub Odisho  
Assistant manager: Razzaq Farhan  
Assistant manager: Hamza Hadi  
Goalkeeping coach: Ahmad Jassim  
Technical Advisor: Mahdi Jassim  
Administrative director: Jassim Ghulam  
Team supervisor: Ahmed Khudhair  

Source:[citation needed]

Honours

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Major

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Type Competition Titles Seasons
Domestic
(national)
Iraq Stars League 7 1974–75, 1989–90, 1991–92, 1996–97, 2004–05, 2016–17, 2020–21
Iraqi National First Division 1 1973–74
Iraq FA Cup 6 1977–78, 1991–92, 1996–97, 2015–16, 2020–21, 2022–23
Umm al-Ma'arik Championship 3s 1994–95, 1996–97, 1998–99
Iraqi Super Cup 2 1997, 2001
Domestic
(regional)
Iraq Central FA Premier League 4 1957–58, 1961–62, 1963–64, 1972–73
Iraq FA Baghdad Cup 1 1974
Iraq Central FA Perseverance Cup 2s 1962, 1964
Continental AFC Cup 3s 2016, 2017, 2018
  •   record
  • S shared record

Minor

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Competition Titles Seasons
New Iraq Championship 1 2003
Al-Quds International Championship 1 2001
Victory Championship 1 1988
Farewell League Trophy 1 1986
Al-Milad Cup 1 1985
Al-Wehdat Championship 1 1984
Stafford Challenge Cup 1 1982[16]
Army League 1 1973–74
Army Cup 4s 1958, 1959, 1964, 1973
Authority Director Cup 1 1964
Al-Firqa Al-Thaniya Cup 1 1961
Inter-Forces Tournament 1 1957
Wajih Younis Cup 1 1956
Jamal Baban Cup 1 1950
Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya Cup 2 1941, 1942
Palestine Cup 1 1942
Capital Secretariat Cup 1 1941
Guardian Cup 1 1940
Taha Al-Hashimi Cup 1 1939
Casuals Cup 4 1932–33, 1933–34, 1934–35, 1935–36
Prince Ghazi Cup 3 1932–33, 1933–34, 1934–35
  •   record
  • S shared record

Statistics

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In domestic competitions

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Regional

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National

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Other sports

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Women's football

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Basketball

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See also

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References

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  1. ^ Iraq - Foundation Dates Archived 2023-02-03 at the Wayback Machine. RSSSF. Retrieved 6 December 2021.
  2. ^ Mubarak, Hassanin (21 March 2013). "Iraqi Football History". Archived from the original on 19 November 2018. Retrieved 19 December 2017.
  3. ^ Mubarak, Hassanin (21 March 2013). "Iraqi Football History". Archived from the original on 19 November 2018. Retrieved 19 December 2017.
  4. ^ "Did You Know? Iraqi Football". Archived from the original on 2024-02-17. Retrieved 2019-04-22.
  5. ^ Anwiyah, Emmanuel. "Ammo Baba Profile". Archived from the original on 2018-11-03. Retrieved 2018-11-03.
  6. ^ Mubarak, Hassanin (21 March 2013). "Iraqi Football History". Archived from the original on 19 November 2018. Retrieved 19 December 2017.
  7. ^ Mubarak, Hassanin (21 March 2013). "Iraqi Football History". Archived from the original on 19 November 2018. Retrieved 19 December 2017.
  8. ^ Mubarak, Hassanin. "Iraq Olympic Team Profile". Ahdaafme. Archived from the original on 2017-12-08. Retrieved 2017-12-19.
  9. ^ "كووورة: الموقع العربي الرياضي الأول". Archived from the original on 2017-08-12. Retrieved 2017-08-11.
  10. ^ "كووورة: الموقع العربي الرياضي الأول". Archived from the original on 2017-08-12. Retrieved 2017-08-11.
  11. ^ "AFC Cup: Bengaluru FC win AFC's Fairplay award". www.goal.com. Goal. 6 November 2016. Archived from the original on 14 September 2020. Retrieved 6 November 2016.
  12. ^ "Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya win the 2016/17 Iraqi Premier League title - Soccer Iraq". 10 August 2017. Archived from the original on 7 August 2018. Retrieved 10 August 2017.
  13. ^ "Greatest Asian Club Derbies: Iraq". Asian Football Confederation. 21 February 2021. Archived from the original on 19 June 2023. Retrieved 19 June 2023.
  14. ^ "مــلــــعــب الصـقـــور يـحتضن ديـربي العراقة". almadapaper.net (in Arabic). September 30, 2015. Archived from the original on February 17, 2024. Retrieved February 12, 2024.
  15. ^ "الليبي زقلام هويدي يزين الديربي العراقي". rimessa.net (in Arabic). November 26, 2019. Archived from the original on February 17, 2024. Retrieved February 12, 2024.
  16. ^ "Sportsweek No.705-717(april-july) 1982". archive.org. 1982. Retrieved 24 February 2023.
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