Franc Veliu (born 11 November 1988 in Vlorë) is an Albanian professional footballer who plays mainly as a defender for Kosovan club Gjilani and the Albania national team. His natural position is left back but he has also played as a left midfielder and even as a central defender.
|Full name||Franc Veliu|
|Date of birth||11 November 1988|
|Place of birth||Vlorë, Albania|
|Height||1.86 m (6 ft 1 in)|
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 3 January 2017|
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 31 December 2014
He only played for one club team at professional level between 2006 and 2015, before joining Kukësi in 2015. He has only ever won two trophies in his career so far, two times Albanian Cup in 2009 and 2014 after winning in the final against Tirana and against current club Kukësi in 2009 and 2014 respectively.
He made his debut for Flamurtari Vlorë in 2006 and since then has cemented his place in his hometown club's first team. He has spent most of his career in the left back position but he has also played as a left midfielder and most recently as a central defender as well. On 29 October 2008, he scored his first hat-trick, an unusual achievement for a defender, in a 1–6 away win against Naftëtari Kuçovë valid for the first leg of the first round of 2008–09 Albanian Cup.
On 1 February 2016, Veliu joined Partizani Tirana where he signed a contract until the end of the season with an option to extend it for a further year. After some matches in bench, Veliu made his first appearance with Red Bulls on 20 March by playing in the last 13 minutes of a 0–2 win at Teuta Durrës. He played his first match as starter later on 17 April in the 3–0 home win over Vllaznia Shkodër; he was however replace at the end of first half. Veliu left the club following the end of the season after making only three appearances, collecting only 80 minutes as the team finished runner-up in the championship.
Return to Flamurtari VlorëEdit
On 22 July 2016, Veliu officially returned to Flamurtari Vlorë by joining as a free agent. He was allocated his old squad number 11, and made his return debut on 7 September in the opening league match of the season, a 2–1 away defeat to Skënderbeu Korçë. On 27 May, in the final matchday, Veliu scored his first goal of the season after an individual effort in a 3–0 win over Korabi Peshkopi, as Flamurtari avoided the relegation by just one point. In June, following the departure of team captain Bruno Telushi in Croatia, Veliu was renamed the new captain, three years after losing the status. He suffered a major injury during the summer preparation phase which forced him to miss the entire first half of 2017–18 season. On 22 July 2017, Veliu signed a contract running until July 2018. He returned on action in the first days of January 2018 where he played in a friendly against the under-19 side.
|Club performance||League||Cup||Continental[nb 1]||Other[nb 2]||Total|
|Flamurtari Vlorë||League||Albanian Cup||Europe||Other||Total|
|2006–06||Flamurtari Vlorë||Albanian Superliga||8||1||?||?||–||0||0||8||1|
|Albania national team|
- Flamurtari Vlorë
- "Vlonjatët në heshtje, kështu përgatisim fitoren" [Vlonjats in silence, here' how we prepared a win] (in Albanian). Arkiva Lajmeve. 21 October 2008. Retrieved 14 November 2015.
- "Flamurtari, Veliu, "Lojtari i Vitit 2014″" [Flamurtari, Veliu, "Player of the Year 2014″] (in Albanian). Panorama Sport. 5 January 2014. Retrieved 6 January 2015.
- Sotir Kora (6 October 2015). "Franc Veliu: Kukësi, zgjedhja e duhur për mua" [Franc Veliu: Kukësi, the right choice for me] (in Albanian). SuperSport Albania. Archived from the original on 11 September 2015. Retrieved 9 September 2015.
- "Zyrtare, Franc Veliu firmos me Partizanin" [Official, Franc Veliu signs with Partizani] (in Albanian). Panorama Sport. 1 February 2016. Retrieved 1 February 2016.
- "Teuta Durrës 0 – 2 Partizani Tirana". Soccerway. 20 March 2016. Retrieved 20 March 2016.
- "Partizani Tirana 3 – 0 Vllaznia Shkodër". Soccerway. 17 April 2016. Retrieved 17 April 2016.
- "Summary - Superliga - Albania - Results, fixtures, tables and news". Soccerway. Retrieved 9 January 2018.
- "ZYRTARE,VELIU RIKTHEHET TEK FLAMURTARI" [OFFICIAL, VELIU RETURNS TO FLAMURTARI] (in Albanian). Vlora News. 22 July 2016. Archived from the original on 6 October 2016. Retrieved 26 September 2016.
- Erald Kodheli (7 September 2016). "Skënderbeu, start nën shenjën e Salihit" [Skënderbeu, start on Salihi's mark] (in Albanian). SuperSport Albania. Archived from the original on 10 September 2016. Retrieved 7 September 2016.
- Andi Deçka (27 May 2017). "Flamurtari qëndron në Superiore" [Flamurtari stays in Superliga] (in Albanian). SuperSport Albania. Retrieved 1 June 2017.
- "Largimi i Telushit "gradon" Veliun, tani është ai përsëri lideri në fushë" [Telushi's departure "graduates" Veliu, he is again on-field leader] (in Albanian). Panorama Sport. 25 June 2017. Retrieved 26 June 2017.
- Jorgis Memo (26 December 2017). "Ngrohja e stolit i ka tërbuar, ja 21 lojtarët që luten për t'u aktivizuar" [Bench warm has angered them, here are 21 players that beg to play] (in Albanian). Panorama Sport. Retrieved 26 December 2017.
- "Zyrtare, Flamurtari rinovon me Veliun" [Official, Flamurtari renew with Veliu] (in Albanian). Sport Ekspres. 22 July 2017. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
- "Veliu, një "blerje" e re për Flamurtarin" [Veliu, a new "purchase" for Flamurtari] (in Albanian). Sport Ekspres. 8 January 2018. Retrieved 9 January 2018.
- Zyrtare: Franc Veliu futbollist i Gjilanit - Telegrafi (in Albanian)
- Roger Gonzalez (19 June 2011). "Argentina vs Albania Preview". Goal.com. Retrieved 26 June 2011.
- "l'Argentina travolge l'Albania in un'amichevole di preparazione" (in Italian). Sport Live. 21 June 2011. Archived from the original on 23 March 2012. Retrieved 26 June 2011.
- "Draugiškose rungtynėse Argentina sutriuškino Albaniją" (in Lithuanian). Sportas Delfi. 21 June 2011. Retrieved 26 June 2011.
- "Arrestohet Franc Veliu, po drejtonte automjetin në gjendje të dehur" [Franc Veliu arrested, was driving the vehicle on drunk condition] (in Albanian). Panorama Sport. 25 October 2015. Retrieved 1 February 2016.
- "Policia arreston futbollistin Franc Veliu, u kap në gjendje të dehur" [The police arrest the footballer Franc Veliu, was caught on drunk condition] (in Albanian). Panorama. 25 October 2015. Retrieved 1 February 2016.
- "Një muaj burg për Franc Veliun, drejtonte automjetin i dehur" [One month jail for Franc Veliu, was driving the vehicle drunk] (in Albanian). Panorama Sport. 27 April 2016. Retrieved 27 April 2016.
- "Albania - F. Veliu - Profile with news, career statistics and history". Soccerway. Retrieved 31 December 2014.
- "Football : Franc Veliu". Football DataBase. 31 December 2014. Retrieved 31 December 2014.
- "Franc Veliu Football Statistics". WhoScored.com. Retrieved 31 December 2014.
- "Profile of Franc Veliu at Scoresway.com". Scoresway.com. Archived from the original on 24 September 2015. Retrieved 31 December 2014.
- "Franc Veliu - national football team player". EU-Football.info. 1 February 2016. Retrieved 1 February 2016.
- Franc Veliu | National Football Teams 31 December 2014
- "Franc Veliu i Flamurtarit lojtari i muajit nentor" [Flamurtari's Franc Veliu player of the month november] (in Albanian). Arkiva e Lajmeve. 12 December 2010. Retrieved 7 July 2015.