Oman Professional League

The Oman Professional League (Arabic: دوري المحترفين عمان‎) (known as the Omantel Professional League for sponsorship reasons), previously known as the Omantel Elite League is the top division of the Oman Football Association, and was officially created in 1976. Currently the most successful team in the league is Dhofar with a total of eleven titles to their name.

Oman Professional League
OmanProfessionalLeague.jpg
Founded1976; 44 years ago (1976)
CountryOman
ConfederationAFC
Number of teams14
Level on pyramid1
Relegation toOman First Division League
Domestic cup(s)Sultan Qaboos Cup
Oman Super Cup
League cup(s)Oman Professional League Cup
International cup(s)AFC Cup
Current championsSuwaiq Club (4th title) (2017–18)
Most championshipsDhofar (10 titles)
TV partnersOman Sports TV
Websitehttp://www.opl.om/
2019–20 Oman Professional League

Evolution to a professional leagueEdit

In 2010, during the annual draw for the Sultan Qaboos Cup, Sultan Qaboos bin Said, Sultan of Oman, granted the OFA an annual 2.6 million rial (approximately 6.7 million dollars) till the year 2015 to further boost the development of the league. The move was made to nurture Oman's football youth, and create higher hopes of Oman qualifying for the 2014 FIFA World Cup. The deal is in addition to the annual 1.6 million rial that the Sultan gives to the OFA every year.

Although being very popular in the local community, it was ranked according to the AFC as a Class D football League till the 2012–13 season. Sayyid Khalid bin Hamid Al-Busaidi, OFA President, had already announced his organization's plan to transform the Omani Football League into a professional league by 2012, and also announced to change the league's name to the Oman Mobile League. The interest from many companies such as Nissan, Shell and Oman Mobile, was one of the main reasons why the league was expected to transform, under with the leadership of Sayyid Khalid.[1]

The contract was extended again for the 2011–12 season for another three years to be known as the Omantel Elite League.

In 2013, ahead of the 2013–14 season, it was announced that the league had taken the first steps to becoming fully professional.[2] The Oman Football League got the seal of approval as a professional league on 1 September 2013 and will henceforth be called the Omantel Professional League (OPL).[3]

On 10 September 2014, one day before the first match of the 2014–15 season was played, Oman Football Association announced the extension of Omantel’s support for the country’s Professional League as its title sponsor.[4]

On 30 April 2016, OFA and the Public Authority for Radio and Television (PART) reached an agreement on TV broadcasting rights of all competitions and matches organised by OFA including those related to OPL and any other competitions and matches for three seasons.[5][6]

On 5 September 2016, the leading healthcare services provider in the Sultanate, Badr Al Samaa Group of Hospitals renewed their partnership with OFA for the 2016-17 Omani football season.[7] On 8 September 2016, OFA confirmed that Omantel will be renewing their contract as the title sponsors of the OPL for the following three years, starting with the 2016-17 season until the 2018-19 season.[8]

Oman Professional League clubs (2016–17)Edit

Relegated in 2015-16Edit

Championship HistoryEdit

As of 28 May 2015[9][10]

Year by yearEdit

Season Champion Runner Up
1976–77 Fanja (1)
1977–78 Ruwi (1)
1978–79 Fanja (2)
1979–80 Al-Nasr (1)
1980–81 Al-Nasr (2)
1981–82 Al-Ahli (1)
1982–83 Dhofar (1) Al-Nasr
1983–84 Fanja (3) Al-Ahli
1984–85 Dhofar (2) Al-Nasr
1985–86 Fanja (4) Al-Ittihad
1986–87 Fanja (5)
1987–88 Fanja (6) Dhofar
1988–89 Al-Nasr (3)
1989–90 Dhofar (3) Al-Nasr
1990–91 Fanja (7)
1991–92 Dhofar (4) Al-Oruba
1992–93 Dhofar (5)
1993–94 Dhofar (6)
1994–95 Sur (1) Al-Seeb
1995–96 Sur (2) Oman
1996–97 Oman (1) Sur
1997–98 Al-Nasr (4) Sur
1998–99 Dhofar (7) Al-Nasr
1999–00 Al-Oruba (1) Al-Nasr
Season Champion Runner Up
2000–01 Dhofar (8) Al-Oruba
2001–02 Al-Oruba (2) Sur
2002–03 Muscat (2) Dhofar
2003–04 Al-Nasr (5) Muscat
2004–05 Dhofar (9) Al-Oruba
2005–06 Muscat (3) Al-Nahda
2006–07 Al-Nahda (1) Al-Oruba
2007–08 Al-Oruba (3) Dhofar
2008–09 Al-Nahda (2) Muscat
2009–10 Al-Suwaiq (1) Dhofar
2010–11 Al-Suwaiq (2) Al-Oruba
2011–12 Fanja (8) Al-Shabab
2012–13 Al-Suwaiq (3) Fanja
2013–14* Al-Nahda (3) Fanja
2014–15 Al-Oruba (4) Fanja
2015–16 Fanja (9) Al-Suwaiq
2016–17 Dhofar (10) Al-Shabab
2017–18 Al-Suwaiq (4) Al-Shabab
2018–19 Dhofar (11) Al-Shabab

*The Professional League began from the 2013–14 season

CitiesEdit

The following table lists the Oman Professional League champions by cities.

City Titles Winning Clubs
Salalah
16
Dhofar (11), Al-Nasr (5)
Fanja
9
Fanja (9)
Sur
6
Al-Oruba (4), Sur (2)
Muscat
5
Muscat (3), Oman (1), Al-Ahli (1)
Al-Suwaiq
4
Al-Suwaiq (4)
Al-Buraimi
3
Al-Nahda (3)

Performance by clubEdit

Club Winners Runners-up Winning Seasons
Dhofar
11
4
1982–83, 1984–85, 1989–90, 1991–92, 1992–93, 1993–94, 1998–99, 2000–01, 2004–05, 2016–17, 2018–19
Fanja
9
3
1976–77, 1978–79, 1983–84, 1985–86, 1986–87, 1987–88, 1990–91, 2011–12, 2015–16
Al-Nasr
5
5
1979–80, 1980–81, 1988–89, 1997–98, 2003–04
Al-Oruba
4
5
1999–00, 2001–02, 2007–08, 2014–15
Al-Suwaiq
4
1
2009–10, 2010–11, 2012–13, 2017–18
Muscat*
3
2
1977–78, 2002–03, 2005–06
Al-Nahda
3
1
2006–07, 2008–09, 2013–14
Sur
2
3
1994–95, 1995–96
Ahli Sidab
1
1
1981–82
Oman
1
1
1996–97

*Includes championships won by Ruwi.

TopscorersEdit

Season Player Club Goals
1991–92   Hilal Hamid Dhofar 14
1995–96   Hilal Hamid Dhofar 20
1996–97   Said Faraj Dhofar 19
2005–06   Salim Al-Shamsi
  Ismail Al-Ajmi
Al Nahda
Muscat
12
2006–07   Mohammed Abdullah Al-Nasr 6
2007–08   Aoerson D'Costa Al Oruba 9
2008–09   Said Al-Ruzaiqi Sur 13
2009–10   Ibrahim Al-Gheilani Al Suwaiq 11
2010–11   Rodrigo Felix de Oliveira Al Nahda 12
2011–12   Waleed Al-Saadi Al Suwaiq 14
2012–13   Ely Cissé Fanja 14
2013–14   Juma Saeed
  Mohammed Al-Ghassani
Al Nahda
Al Suwaiq
16
2014–15   Mechac Koffi Al-Nasr 19
2015–16   Vedran Gerc Sohar 14
2016–17   Essam Al-Barahi Al-Rustaq 16

Notable achievements by Omani clubsEdit

The only trophy won by an Omani club in the regional or continental level was by Fanja in the 1989 Gulf Club Champions Cup. Fanja was the first Omani club to win an international tournament. It was the 1989 Gulf Club Champions Cup, later named GCC Champions League. Fanja defeated Al-Muharraq of Bahrain in a penalty shootout after the match had ended 1–1 in the normal time. Fanja has appeared four times in the same tournament.

In the 1993–94 Asian Club Championship Omani club, Oman Club were awarded with second place after failing to beat Thai club, Thai Farmers Bank.

A few years later in 1996, Dhofar attempted to win the GCC Champions Cup, as Fanja did in 1989, but failed in the final match against Saudi club, Al-Nassr and finished with second place.

Most recently Al-Nahda competed in the 2008 AFC Cup, but were knocked-out in the semi-finals by eventual champions of the competition, Al-Muharraq on scoring aggregate.

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "His Highness Sayyid Khalid Hamad Hamoud al Busaidi, chairman and president, Oman Football Association shares his plans to professionalise football in Oman". OER Oman Economic Review. Archived from the original on 6 November 2009.
  2. ^ "Oman football to enter a new phase tomorrow". Times of Oman. Archived from the original on 14 February 2014. Retrieved 14 February 2014.
  3. ^ "Professional League launched". Times of Oman. Archived from the original on 18 February 2014.
  4. ^ "OFA extends league tie-up with Omantel". Oman Observer.
  5. ^ "OFA, PART reach TV coverage deal". Oman Observer.
  6. ^ "شراكة تسويقية بين اتحاد القدم والتليفزيون لـ 3 مواسم". azamn.com.
  7. ^ "Oman FA, Badr Al Samaa renew partnership". Times of Oman.
  8. ^ "Omantel Renew as Title Sponsors of Omantel Professional League". opl.om. Archived from the original on 13 June 2018. Retrieved 12 September 2016.
  9. ^ "Oman – List of Champions". RSSSF. Retrieved 2 March 2012.
  10. ^ "Most championships". goalzz.com. Retrieved 2 March 2012.

External linksEdit