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Kitchee Sports Club (Chinese: 傑志體育會; Jyutping: Git6zi3 Tai2juk6wui2; [kìːt̚ tsīː tʰɐ̌i jòk̚ wǔːy]; pinyin: Jiézhì tǐyù huì) is a Hong Kong football team based in Kowloon. It was founded in 1931 and currently competes in the Hong Kong Premier League.

Kitchee
Kitchee SC crest.svg
Full nameKitchee Sports Club
Nickname(s)香港巴塞 (Barça of Hong Kong), The Bluewaves
Founded1931; 88 years ago (1931)
GroundMong Kok Stadium
Capacity6,769
PresidentKen Ng
Head CoachBlaž Slišković
LeagueHong Kong Premier League
2018–194th
WebsiteClub website
Current season

The club has won the Hong Kong Premier League three times, the Hong Kong First Division six times, and the Hong Kong FA Cup four times in their history. In the last 5 years, Kitchee won slightly more than 50% of all possible trophies being competed in Hong Kong.

Contents

HistoryEdit

 
Kitchee squad in Macau ahead of a charity exhibition match in 1959.
 
Kitchee team members celebrate winning the 2006–07 Hong Kong League Cup.

FormationEdit

In the late 1920s, a group of Hong Kongers formed a football team in order to compete in the Hong Kong Third Division. It was not until 1931, however, that the team was established as Kitchee Sports Club.[1]

Kitchee was founded as a grassroots organization, as such, they lacked the funding to pay the administrative and facilities costs necessary to become a multi sports club. It was not until 1934 when the club were able to raise the money to rent an office at 130 Johnston Road in Wan Chai, that they were admitted as members of the Hong Kong Football Association.[2]

World War IIEdit

In 1939, Japanese bombs accidentally hit Hong Kong during the Second Sino-Japanese War.[3] The club's records during this time were destroyed during the bombing.

As the Pacific War began, Hong Kong fell to the Japanese on 25 December 1941, therefore the club's operations were suspended during the three-year, eight-month Japanese occupation of Hong Kong.

After the Japanese surrender of Hong Kong in August 1945, former members of Kitchee returned to the club. They resolved to help revitalize the Chinese Amateur Athletic Federation of Hong Kong and establish the Chinese Football Association of Hong Kong, the Hong Kong Chinese Football Referees’ Association and the Hong Kong Chinese Footballer's Fraternity.[4]

Post War to 1964Edit

Following the war, Kitchee were admitted into the 1947–48 Hong Kong First Division League where they won the league title, the club's first major trophy. Between 1947 and 1964, the club won three Hong Kong First Division titles, one Second Division title, four Hong Kong Senior Shield's and one Hong Kong Junior Shield.

During this period, Kitchee discovered Hong Kong football legends Yiu Cheuk Yin and Lam Sheung Yee. Yiu led the club to its first two First Division titles and later became known as the "Treasure of Hong Kong Football."[5] Lam spent a total 14 years at Kitchee, split between two spells, and was a part of every Kitchee squad which won a trophy between 1948 and 1964.[6]

1965 to 2003Edit

In 1965–66, Kitchee won only one game while drawing four others in the season, finishing second bottom of the table. The club were relegated after a 17-year spell in the top flight. In the subsequent season, Kitchee slid into the Third Division for the first time in three decades.

In the late 1980s, Law Ding Chun was hired as the new chairman of Kitchee. Law moved quickly to modernize the operations of Kitchee, buying insurance for all of his players in order to provide them with peace of mind in the event of an injury. His changes worked as Kitchee were soon promoted back to the Second Division.

In 1991–92, Kitchee won the Second Division title, returning to the top flight for the first time in 26 years. The squad during this period featured many future Hong Kong internationals including Yau Kin Wai, Chung Ho Yin, Yeung Hei Chi, Yeung Ching Kwong, Dale Tempest, as well as former England international Mark Barham. Kitchee spent three seasons in the top flight before they were relegated along with Kui Tan at the end of the 1994–95 season.

During the 1998–99 season, Kitchee won promotion back to the First Division as well as the Hong Kong Junior Shield. The following year, the squad were led by a backbone of young local players such as Lee Wai Lun, Man Pei Tak and Ng Wai Chiu. However, these were soon poached by bigger clubs and due to inadequate replacements, the performance of the team suffered and Kitchee were once again relegated at the conclusion of the 2000–01 season.

Ahead of the 2002–03 season, former Hong Kong national team manager Chan Hung Ping was hired as Kitchee's manager. He led the team to the Second Division title in his one and only season as manager.

A new golden ageEdit

Following its return to the First Division in 2003, Kitchee became one of the most prominent teams in Hong Kong, winning three trophies in two seasons under coach Dejan Antonic: two in (2005–2006) and one in 2006–07 season. The club secured 2nd place in the league, along with league champions South China who had already qualified for the AFC Cup as the Hong Kong Senior Shield winners. As a result, Kitchee became one of two Hong Kong representatives in the 2008 AFC Cup.

Since 2009, the club has been a partner of the Chinese University of Hong Kong in its Injury Prevention and Performance Enhancement (IPPE) program.[7]

Kitchee were invited to take part in the 2010 Singapore Cup,[8] becoming the first Hong Kong team to take part in the tournament. The club lost to Etoile FC 4:6 over two legs in the quarter final.

In the 2010–11 season, under coach Josep Gombau, Kitchee won its first league title in 47 years by one point over arch rival South China, allowing the club to compete in both the 2011 Barclays Asia Trophy, where they lost 0:4 to Chelsea and 0:3 to Blackburn Rovers, and in the 2012 AFC Cup.

Between 2011–14, Kitchee players combined to win the Footballer of the Year award for four straight years. The recipients of this award were Roberto Losada in 2011, Lo Kwan Yee in 2012, Huang Yang in 2013 and Fernando Recio in 2014.

In 2012, Kitchee Foundation submitted a successful proposal to The Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust for a youth football training centre. The club received over HK$44 million from the trust for the establishment of a training ground at Shek Mun, Shatin, New Territories. The Jockey Club Kitchee Centre, as it was later called, opened in 2014. The trust provided 90% of the funding, with the rest coming in part from the proceeds of a Kitchee vs Arsenal exhibition match where they drew 2–2.[9] Apart from serving as the training ground of Kitchee first team and Kitchee Academy, the Centre also provides facilities for the Education Bureau-approved Professional Footballer Preparatory Programme, which Kitchee jointly offers with Yan Chai Hospital Tung Chi Ying Memorial Secondary School, in order to integrate football training into regular school curriculum and schedule.

In October 2012, Arsenal donated HK$780,000 to Kitchee Foundation in support of the youth training centre.[10]

The club won the 2013–14 First Division title. The following season, Kitchee won the inaugural Hong Kong Premier League, the 2014–15 HKFA Cup and the 2014–15 League Cup, completing the treble for the second time.

In 2016–17, Kitchee completed a treble for the third time, capturing the 2016–17 Senior Shield, the 2016–17 Hong Kong FA Cup and the 2016-17 Hong Kong Premier League title.[11] The club promoted long time assistant coach Chu Chi Kwong to Head Coach and Director of Football. Brazilian attacking midfielder Fernando won the 2017 Footballer of the Year award while striker Sandro won the Golden Boot.

During the 2017 AFC Champions League qualifiers, Kitchee won against Vietnam's Hà Nội 3–2 but lost in the playoff rounds to Ulsan Hyundai in penalties.

Kitchee directly qualified 2018 AFC Champions League group stage through their HKPL title. The join of Diego Forlán in January 2018 also boost the awareness among Hong Kong. Despite being currently at the bottom of the table, they managed to achieve a 1–0 win over Kashiwa Reysol, making them the first ever team from Hong Kong to win a game in the history of the AFC Champions League group stage. Domestically, Kitchee won the 2017–18 Hong Kong Premier League, 2017–18 Hong Kong FA Cup and the 2017–18 Hong Kong Sapling Cup, completing a treble for the second consecutive season and the fourth in club history.

Current squadEdit

As of 15 July 2019

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 Wang Zhenpeng
3   DF Dani Cancela
4   DF Li Ngai Hoi
5   DF Hélio
7   MF Fernando FP
9   FW Lucas Silva FP
10   MF Cleiton FP
11   FW Wellingsson FP
15   DF Brian Fok
16   MF Jared Lum LP
17   GK Wong Tsz Chung
19   MF Huang Yang (captain)
21   DF Tong Kin Man
No. Position Player
22   MF Clement Benhaddouche LP
23   GK Guo Jianqiao
24   MF Ju Yingzhi
27   FW Yu Yang
28   FW Cheng Chin Lung
31   DF Law Tsz Chun
32   MF Krisztián Vadócz FP
34   MF Barak Braunshtain LP
35   MF Mark Swainston LP
44   FW Yuto Nakamura
67   MF Seb Buddle
95   MF Chan Shinichi
99   FW Manuel Bleda FP

Remarks:
LP These players are considered as local players in Hong Kong domestic football competitions.
FP These players are registered as foreign players.

Out on loanEdit

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

No. Position Player
—–   GK Paulo César (on loan at   -)
—–   GK Chan Ka Ho (on loan at Yuen Long)
—–   MF Ho Chun Ting (on loan at Tai Po)

Club cultureEdit

SupportersEdit

Kitchee's supporter group is known as "Ultras Bluewave". The group was formed in 2015, as is active at home and away matches in both the Hong Kong Premier League, and in continental competition.

HonoursEdit

LeagueEdit

Champions (3): 2014–15, 2016–17, 2017–18
Champions (6): 1947–48, 1949–50, 1963–64, 2010–11, 2011–12, 2013–14
Runners-up (8): 1952–53, 1954–55, 1956–57, 2003–04, 2006–07, 2008–09, 2012–13, 2015–16
Champions (3): 1950–51, 1991–92, 2002–03
Champions (1): 1997–98

Cup competitionsEdit

Champions (7): 1949–50, 1953–54, 1959–60, 1963–64, 2005–06, 2016–17, 2018–19
Runners-up (6): 1948–49, 1951–52, 1955–56, 2007–08, 2009–10, 2014–15
Champions (6): 2011–12, 2012–13, 2014–15, 2016–17, 2017–18, 2018–19
Runners-up (2): 2003–04, 2013–14
Champions (5): 2005–06, 2006–07, 2011–12, 2014–15, 2015–16
Champions (1): 2017–18
  • Hong Kong Community Cup
Champions (2): 2017, 2018
Champions (1): 2009

Continental recordEdit

Win Draw Loss
Season Competition Round Club Home Away Aggregate
2008 AFC Cup Group E   Singapore Armed Forces 0–2 4–0 3rd
  New Radiant 2–0 2–1
  Perak 2–2 2–1
2012 AFC Cup Group F   Tampines Rovers 3–1 0–0 1st
  Terengganu 2–2 0–2
  Sông Lam Nghệ An 2–0 1–0
Round of 16   Arema 0–2
2013 AFC Cup Group E   Churchill Brothers 3–0 0–4 2nd
  Warriors 5–0 2–4
  Semen Padang 1–2 3–1
Round of 16   Kelantan 0–2
Quarter-finals   Al-Faisaly 1–2 2–1 2–4
2014 AFC Cup Group H   Tampines Rovers 4–0 0–5 1st
  Pune 2–2 2–0
  Nay Pyi Taw 2–0 1–2
Round of 16   Arema Cronus 2–0
Quarter-finals   Vissai Ninh Bình 0–1 2–4 4–3
Semi-finals   Erbil 1–2 1–1 2–3
2015 AFC Cup Group F   Balestier Khalsa 3–0 1–2 2nd
  East Bengal 2–2 1–1
  Johor Darul Ta'zim 2–0 2–0
Round of 16   Persib Bandung 0–2
Quarter-finals   Al-Kuwait 1–1 6–0 1–7
2016 AFC Cup Group F   Kaya FC 1–0 0–1 1st
  Balestier Khalsa 4–0 1–0
  New Radiant 0–0 0–2
Round of 16   Bengaluru FC 2–3
2017 AFC Champions League Preliminary Round 2   Hà Nội 3–2 (aet)
Play-off Round   Ulsan Hyundai 1–1 (4–3 p)
2018 AFC Champions League Group E   Tianjin Quanjin 0–1 3–0 4th
  Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors 0–6 3–0
  Kashiwa Reysol 1–0 1–0
2019 AFC Champions League Preliminary Round 2   Perak 1–1 (6–5 p)
2019 AFC Cup East Asia Zone Group I   Tai Po 2-4 3-3 2nd
  April 25 1-0 2-0
  Hang Yuen 3-0 1–2

Invitational tournament recordEdit

Season Competition Round Club Home Away Aggregate
2010 Singapore Cup Preliminary Round   Beijing Guoan Talent 1 – 2 (aet)
Quarter-finals   Etoile FC 4–4 2–0 4–6

Club officialsEdit

Club Senior staffEdit

Position Name
President   Ken Ng
General manager   Wilson Ng
Public Relations Manager   Ng Yee Yun
Director of Marketing   Lo Shuk Ting
Director of Football   Chu Chi Kwong
Assistant Director of Football   Leung Chi Wing
Competition Manager   Chiu Yun Shing
Customer Service Manager   Cheng Ching Yu

Club Coach staffEdit

Position Name
Head coach   Blaž Slišković
Assistant Coach (Attack)   Roberto Losada
Assistant Coach (Defence)   Kim Dong-jin
Goalkeeping Coach   Roberto Sambade Carreira
Fitness Coach   Bae Ji-won
Director of Youth Development   Chu Chi Kwong
Head of Recovery & Regeneration   Pau MP
Trainer & Youth Team Coach   Yoon Dong-hun
Club Physiotherapist   Ngai Chi Wing
Team Assistant   Lee Wing Po
Reserve Team Coach   Chu Chi KwongRoberto Losada  Bae Ji-won
U18 Team Coach   Chu Chi Kwong  Roberto Losada  Bae Ji-won
U16 Team Coach   Yoon Dong-hun
U15 Team Coach   Kim Dong-jin
U14 Team Coach   Gao Wen
U13 Team Coach   Chu Chi Kwong
U12 Team Coach   Yoon Dong-hun
U11 Team Coach   Tong Kin Man
Club Doctor   Dr. Yung Shu Hang
Kitchee Academy Director   Roberto Losada
Kitchee Academy Coach   Gao Wen,  Tim Bredbury  Yau Kin Wai
Professional Footballer Preparatory Programme Coach   Chu Chi Kwong

Basic InformationEdit

Item Name
Training Ground   Jockey Club Kitchee Centre
Official Mascot Kit Jai (A Little Blue Bird)'
Official Club Song We Are Kitchee!
Unofficial Supporters Group ULTRAS BLUEWAVE
Youth Football Training Academy   Kitchee Soccer Academy powered by   DV7 Soccer Academy
Professional Footballer Preparatory Programme Partnership   Yan Chai Hospital Tung Chi Ying Memorial Secondary School
Home Stadium for Hong Kong Premier League and AFC Cup   Mong Kok Stadium
Home Stadium for AFC Champions League   Hong Kong Stadium

History of Head CoachesEdit

Years Name Notes
2002–2003   Chan Hung Ping
2003–2005   Cheng Siu Chung, Lam Hing Lun Co-coaching and both coaches have played in part of the matches as players
July 1, 2005 – Dec 31, 2007   Dejan Antonić
2007–2008   Chu Chi Kwong Caretaker
May 1, 2008 – March 30, 2009   Julio César Moreno
2009   Cheng Siu Chung Caretaker
Aug 1, 2009 – April 30, 2013   Josep Gombau
July 1, 2013 – Nov 14, 2013   Àlex Gómez
Nov 15, 2013 – May 23, 2014   Chu Chi Kwong,   Cheng Siu Chung Caretaker
May 23, 2014 – 2015   'José Francisco Molina
July 2015 – Mar 2016   Abraham Garcia
Mar 2016   Chu Chi Kwong Caretaker
July 2016 – July 2019   Chu Chi Kwong
July 3, 2019 – present   Blaž Slišković

Notable seasonsEdit

Season League League Position Senior Shield FA Cup League Cup Season Play-offs Community Cup Asia Tournament Top scorer Notes
1947–
1948
First Division Champion
1949–
1950
First Division Champion Champion Double Champions
1950–
1951
Second Division Champion
1951–
1952
Second Division Junior Shield Champion
1953–
1954
First Division Champion
1959–
1960
First Division Champion
1963–
1964
First Division Champion Champion Double Champions
1991–
1992
Second Division Champion Promoted
1997–
1998
Third Division Champion Promoted
1998–
1999
Second Division Junior Shield Champion
2000–
2001
First Division 8 Relegated
2002–
2003
Second Division Champion Promoted
2003–
2004
First Division Runners-up Second round Runners-up Group stage
2004–
2005
First Division 3 Semi-finals Semi-finals Group stage
2005–
2006
First Division 4 Champion First round Champion   Keith Gumbs 15 Double Champions
2006–
2007
First Division Runners-up Semi-finals Semi-finals Champion   Keith Gumbs 13
2007–
2008
First Division 6 Runners-up Quarter-finals Runners-up AFC Cup Group stage   Goran Stankovski 12
2008–
2009
First Division Runners-up Quarter-finals Quarter-finals Semi-finals   Paul Ngue 14
2009–
2010
First Division 3 Runners-up First round Champion   Baruc Nsue 7
2010–
2011
First Division Champion Quarter-finals First round Semi-finals Singapore Cup Quarter-finalists 2011 HKFC International Soccer Sevens Main Tournament Champion   Jordi Tarrés 15 Double Champions
2011–
2012
First Division Champion 1st round Champion Champion AFC Cup Round of 16   Roberto Losada 13 Treble Champions
2012–
2013
First Division Runners-up Quarter-finals Champion Champion AFC Cup Quarter-finals   Jordi Tarrés 18 Double Champions
2013–
2014
First Division Champion 1st round Runners-up AFC Cup Semi-finals   Juan Belencoso 22
2014–
2015
Premier League Champion Runners-up Champion Champion Runners-up ACL

AFC Cup

Pre. round 2

Quarter-finals

  Juan Belencoso 34 Treble Champions
2015–
2016
Premier League Runners-up Semi-finals Quarter-finals Champion Champion Runners-up ACL

AFC Cup

Pre. round 2

Round of 16

  Rufino Segovia 17 Double Champions
2016–
2017
Premier League Champion Champion Champion Runners-up ACL Play-off round   Sandro 25 Treble Champions
Season League League Position FA Cup Senior Shield Sapling Cup Community Cup Women's League Women League
FA Cup
Asia Tournament Top scorer Notes
2017–
2018
Premier League Champion Champion Semi-finals Champion Champion Champion 3 2018 ACL
Group-Stage
  Lucas Silva,   Sandro 16 Five Champions
2018–
2019
Premier League 4 Champion Champion Group
Stage
Champion 3 Champion 2019 AFC Cup East
Asia Zone Group Stage
  Lucas Silva 18 Quadruple Champions
2019–
2020
Premier League 2020 AFC Cup East
Asia Zone
Play-off round

Kit manufacturers and shirt sponsorsEdit

Period Kit manufacturer Kit sponsor
2003–2004 Umbro Xplore
2004–2008 Mizuno Canon
2008–2013 Nike
2013–2018 Jockey Club Kitchee Centre
2018– edps Systems Ltd.

Asian club rankingEdit

As of 2 July 2019 [12]
Current Rank Country Team Points
60   Kashiwa Reysol 28.00
61   Kitchee 27.75
62   Al-Fateh 26.75

FootnotesEdit

  1. ^ a b Upon its formation in 2014, Hong Kong Premier League became the top tier of Hong Kong football; the First and Second Divisions then became the second and third tiers, respectively.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Chow, Ka Kin (28 August 2015). 濁世消磨──日治時期香港人的休閒生活. Chung Hwa Book Co.(HK) Ltd. p. 11. ISBN 9789888340507.
  2. ^ "傑志歷史". Kitchee Football Team. (in Chinese)
  3. ^ "War in China". Time. 6 March 1939. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
  4. ^ "傑志歷史". Kitchee Football Team. (in Chinese)
  5. ^ "'Treasure of Hong Kong Football' Yiu dies". South China Morning Post.
  6. ^ Lo, Clifford; Chow, Vivienne. "City mourns Spencer Lam, the soccer hero turned commentator famous for his dry wit". South China Morning Post. Retrieved 24 April 2009.
  7. ^ Injury prevention and performance enhancement intervention in soccer Archived 28 March 2012 at the Wayback Machine Sports Performance and Biomechanics Laboratory, Department of Orthopaedics and Traumatology, Prince of Wales Hospital, Faculty of Medicine, Chinese University of Hong Kong
  8. ^ Kitchee set for Singapore Cup RTHK news 30 April 2010 Archived 4 March 2016 at the Wayback Machine
  9. ^ "ARSENAL MATCH TO CELEBRATE ESTABLISHMENT OF JOCKEY CLUB KITCHEE CENTRE". Hong Kong Jockey Club. 5 July 2012.
  10. ^ Chan Kin Wa (17 October 2012). "Arsenal: 'We've promised fans a China rematch'". South China Morning Post.
  11. ^ "Kitchee edge South China in FA Cup Final to clinch treble". Football Tribe. Retrieved 24 July 2017.
  12. ^ https://footyrankings.com/afc-ranking/clubrank2019/

External linksEdit