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Erbil Sport Club (Arabic: نادي أربيل الرياضي‎, Kurdish: یانەی وەرزشیی هەولێر‎, Yaney Werzişîy Hewlêr) is a sports club based in the city of Erbil, Iraqi Kurdistan that plays in the Iraqi Premier League, the first-tier of Iraqi football. The club is also known as Yaney Hewlêr, the Kurdish name for Erbil. For the first time in its history, Erbil became champions of the Iraqi Premier League after beating Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya (1–0) in the final game on Friday, 6 July 2007. On 24 August 2008, Erbil retained their status as Iraqi Premier League champions with a well-deserved win over Baghdad based Al-Zawraa. On 16 July 2009 Erbil became the champion of Iraq's super league for the third consecutive year after beating Najaf FC. They also won the league in 2012 with only one loss.

Erbil SC
Erbil Sports Club Badge.png
Full nameErbil Sports Club
Nickname(s)Yellow Castle
Founded3 november 1968; 51 years ago (1968)
GroundFranso Hariri Stadium
ChairmanAbdullah Majid
ManagerAkram Salman
LeagueIraqi Premier League
2018–19Iraqi Premier League, 11th
Current season

Erbil Sport Club is the first Iraqi-Kurdish team to qualify for the Asian Champions League and the Arab Champions League. In 2012 and 2014 they reached the AFC Cup final but lost both times. Erbil SC is the first Iraqi Premier League team to get players from outside Iraq.




Erbil SC was founded in 1/11/1968 by the former Kurdistan-Iraq Football Association (الحاج محمد عثمان لك) and spent many years in mid-table obscurity, occasionally challenging the top Iraqi sides.[1]

(2004–) and onwardsEdit

After the turn of the century and the beginning of the Iraq War, Erbil FC has dramatically improved and have become a real powerhouse in Iraqi club football. Top Iraqi international players have begun coming north to play their trade with good wages.[1]

Nadhim Shaker and glory yearsEdit

In the summer of 2005, Shaker left rivals Duhok SC to coach Erbil. In the 2005–06 season, Erbil started slow, only just managing to finish third in Group A just ahead of Sirwan FC on goal difference to advance to the second round. Erbil topped their group in the second round to advance to the end of season play-offs where they met southern giants Najaf FC in a two-legged home and away tie. Erbil were beaten by Najaf by a 4–1 scoreline which basically dented all hope of reaching the play-off final for the title. In the home leg, Erbil were winning 1–0 when the match got suspended with a replay taking place five days later with the match resulting in a 1–1 scoreline. This meant Erbil were knocked out of a chance of winning the championship but would instead take part in the third-place play-off match. This match didn't take place as in the other semi-final match between the two Baghdad giants, Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya and Al-Zawra'a. The second match of the leg was cancelled as the Al-Quwa players walked off the pitch, resulting in their disqualification and Erbil getting the automatic third-place finish. All in all, it was a strong first season under Shaker and that summer the team improved personnel ready for the next season.

Franso Hariri StadiumEdit

Franso Hariri Stadium is the stadium where Erbil Sport Club play their home games. It is a multi-use stadium in Erbil. The stadium holds 40,000, making it the third largest in Iraq after Basra Sports City in Basra and Al Shaab Stadium in Baghdad. It was built in 1992.

After the assassination of Franso Heriri on 18 February 2001, who actively supported rebuilding the stadium, the Kurdistan Regional Government renamed it in his memory.

In July 2009, Franso Hariri Stadium became Iraq national football team's home venue after the green-light from AFC to host the Iraqi national and clubs teams in Erbil.[2] However, due to technical problems, FIFA abandoned the idea of having more national games being hosted in the stadium.


Erbil SC's main rival is Duhok SC with whom they contest the South Kurdistan derby.


Performance in AFC competitionsEdit

2008: Group Stage
2009: Quarter-finals
2011: Semi-finals
2012: Runners-up
2013: Round of 16
2014: Runners-up
2015: Group Stage

Individual HonoursEdit

2009 FIFA Confederations Cup

The following players have played in the FIFA Confederations Cup whilst playing for Erbil:


First-team squadEdit

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

No. Position Player
1   GK Rebaz Abdullah
2   DF Nozad Abdul Hameed
5   DF Niyaz Mohammed
8   MF Ahmed Ali
10   MF Mohammed Jaffal
11   MF Thiago Amaral
13   DF Ali Hussein
15   DF Waleed Bahar
16   MF Miran Khesro
18   MF Heidar Qaraman
20   GK Dler Hatem
21   GK Sarhang Muhsin (captain)
22   GK Didar Hamid
23   DF Kosarat Bayz
24   MF Warya Kameran
No. Position Player
28   DF Kameran Khalid
29   MF Barzan Sherzad
31   DF Herdi Siamand
35   DF Ahmed Khalid
55   MF Aaso Rostom
56   FW Diyar Ali
77   MF Ahmed Sartib
87   FW Marcel Sacramento
88   DF Alaa Al Shbli
99   FW Dana Othman
  MF Shwan Mamo
  DF Hussein Jamal
  MF Hussein Abdul-Wahid Khalaf
  DF Taqi Falah
  MF Tijani Belaïd

Recent historyEdit

Season Pos. Pl. W D L GS GA P AFC CL AFC Cup Arab CL Notes
2000–01 12 30 6 11 13 24 46 29
2001–02 6 38 20 12 6 61 32 72
2002–03 8 27 10 7 10 44 33 37
2003–04 Abandoned due to war
2004–05 5 20 9 6 5 32 23
2005–06 3 19 6 7 5 18 16
2006–07 1 19 14 3 2 34 11 1st round
2007–08 1 24 15 6 3 33 10 Group Stage
2008–09 1 27 20 5 2 55 17
2009–10 4 42 29 6 7 79 22
2010–11 2 27 17 6 4 54 21 Semi-finals
2011–12 1 38 23 14 1 65 22 83 Finals
2012–13 2 34 21 7 6 67 34 70 Round of 16
2013–14 2 21 12 6 3 29 15 42 Finals
2014–15 11 18 5 10 3 21 17 Group Stage
2015–16 11 17 5 8 4 19 17
2016–17 Withdrew 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
  • From 2004–05 season, the competition changed from League system to various rounds including table and knockout rounds.
  • From 2011–12 season, the competition went back to the single league system.
  • From 2014–15 season, the competition returned to a system with various rounds.
  • From 2016–17 season, the competition went back to the single league system.

Managerial historyEdit

Name Nationality Years
Yahya Alwan   2004–05
Nadhim Shaker   2005–07
Akram Salman   2007–08
Thair Ahmed   2008–10
Ayoub Odisho   2010–11
Nizar Mahrous   2012–13
Rodion Gačanin   2013
Ayoub Odisho   2013–15
Ahmad Salah   2015
Thair Ahmed   2015–17
Ali Wahab   2017–18
Emad Aoda   25 August 2018-6 December 2018
Nadhum Shaker   8 December -26 April 2019
Akram Ahmad Salman   28 April 2019–

Nationality is indicated by the corresponding FIFA country code(s).

Current technical staffEdit

Position Name Nationality
Manager: Akram Ahmad Salman  
Assistant manager: Haidar Mahmoud  
Assistant manager: Kawah kader  
Goalkeeping coach: Vacant  
Fitness coach: Vacant  
Administrative director: Govand Abdul-Khaliq  

Last updated: July 2019
Source:[citation needed]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b "About Erbil Sport Club". Erbil Sport Club website. 19 October 2017.
  2. ^ "AFC green-light to Arbil as venue". 15 July 2009. Archived from the original on 19 July 2009. Retrieved 15 July 2009.

External linksEdit