Istanbul Football League

The Istanbul Football League (Turkish: İstanbul Futbol Ligi) was founded as a regional football league under the name Constantinople Football Association League by James La Fontaine and Henry Pears in Istanbul, the capital of the former Ottoman Empire, in 1904. The Istanbul League was the first football organization ever in the Ottoman Empire and later Turkey. In the inaugural 1904–05 season the matches between the four teams, Moda FC, HMS Imogene, Elpis FC, and Cadi-Keuy FC were played on Sundays, leading to the name of the league, Istanbul Sunday League. Henry Pears, an Englishman and one of the three founders, promised to ultimately award the shield to the club with the most championships won during the initial 10 years.

Istanbul Football League
Number of teamsvarious
Level on pyramid1
Domestic cup(s)Istanbul Shield
Istanbul Football Cup
Last championsFenerbahçe (16th title)
Most championshipsFenerbahçe (16 titles)
One of the founders of the league, James Lafontaine
Founder Henry Pears

The Istanbul Friday League was founded in 1915 and replaced the Istanbul Sunday League. Seven teams participated in its inaugural 1915–16 season. From 1923–24 to 1950–51 the league was called Istanbul League. The name was later changed and became Istanbul Professional League in the 1952 season, as professionalism was introduced by the Turkish Football Federation in 1951.

Fenerbahçe are the most successful club, having won the league a record 16 times in total.



Season Winners (number of titles) Runners-up
1904–05 HMS Imogene FC (1) Moda FC
1905–06 Cadi-Keuy FC (1) HMS Imogene FC
1906–07 Cadi-Keuy FC (2) Moda FC
1907–08 Moda FC (1) Cadi-Keuy FC
1908–09 Galatasaray SK (1) Moda FC
1909–10 Galatasaray SK (2) Strugglers FC
1910–11 Galatasaray SK (3) Progress FC
1911–12 Fenerbahçe SK (1) Rumblers FC
Unaccomplished due to the Balkan Wars
1913–14 Fenerbahçe SK (2) Altınordu İdman Yurdu
1914–15 Galatasaray SK (4) Üsküdar Anadolu SK
1914–15 Fenerbahçe SK (3) Türk İdman Ocağı
1915–16 Galatasaray SK (5) Fenerbahçe SK
1916–17 Altınordu İdman Yurdu (1) Üsküdar Anadolu SK
1917–18 Altınordu İdman Yurdu (2) Fenerbahçe SK
Unaccomplished due to Armistice of Mudros
1920–21 Fenerbahçe SK (4) Galatasaray SK
1921–22 Galatasaray SK (6) Fenerbahçe SK
1922–23 Fenerbahçe SK (5) Altınordu İdman Yurdu
1923–24 Beşiktaş JK (1) Galatasaray SK
1924–25 Galatasaray SK(7) Vefa SK
1925–26 Galatasaray SK(8) Fenerbahçe SK
1926–27 Galatasaray SK(9) Fenerbahçe SK
Cancelled due to the 1928 Summer Olympics in Amsterdam
1928–29 Galatasaray SK (10) Fenerbahçe SK
1929–30 Fenerbahçe SK (6) Galatasaray SK
1930–31 Galatasaray SK (11) Fenerbahçe SK
1931–32 İstanbulspor (1) Süleymaniye FC
1932–33 Fenerbahçe SK (7) Beşiktaş JK
1933–34 Beşiktaş JK (2) Fenerbahçe SK
1934–35 Fenerbahçe SK (8) Galatasaray SK
1935–36 Fenerbahçe SK (9) Galatasaray SK
1936–37 Fenerbahçe SK (10) Güneş SK
1937–38 Güneş SK (1) Fenerbahçe SK
1938–39 Beşiktaş JK (3) Fenerbahçe SK
1939–40 Beşiktaş JK (4) Fenerbahçe SK
1940–41 Beşiktaş JK (5) Fenerbahçe SK
1941–42 Beşiktaş JK (6) Galatasaray SK
1942–43 Beşiktaş JK (7) Fenerbahçe SK
1943–44 Fenerbahçe SK (11) Beşiktaş JK
1944–45 Beşiktaş JK (8) Fenerbahçe SK
1945–46 Beşiktaş JK (9) Fenerbahçe SK
1946–47 Fenerbahçe SK (12) Vefa SK
1947–48 Fenerbahçe SK (13) Beşiktaş JK
1948–49 Galatasaray SK (12) Beşiktaş JK
1949–50 Beşiktaş JK (10) Fenerbahçe SK
1950–51 Beşiktaş JK (11) Galatasaray SK
1952 Beşiktaş JK (12) Galatasaray SK
1952–53 Fenerbahçe SK (14) Beşiktaş JK
1953–54 Beşiktaş JK (13) Galatasaray SK
1954–55 Galatasaray SK (13) Beşiktaş JK
1955–56 Galatasaray SK (14) Fenerbahçe SK
1956–57 Fenerbahçe SK (15) Galatasaray SK
1957–58 Galatasaray SK (15) Fenerbahçe SK
1958–59 Fenerbahçe SK (16) Galatasaray SK

Istanbul Sunday League (İstanbul Pazar Ligi)Edit

Istanbul Friday League (İstanbul Cuma Ligi)Edit

Istanbul League (İstanbul Ligi)Edit

Istanbul Professional LeagueEdit