Baku. 24 August. REPORT.AZ/ BBC Turkish Service has published an article about the first Azerbaijani club that qualified for the Champions League group stage.
Report informs, the article titled The first Azerbaijani club climbed to the Champions League group stage writes that the Aghdam club represents Nagorno-Karabakh territory occupied by Armenia. At the same time, it was noted that after the 21 years in 2013/2014 season, Azerbaijan won the championship and put an end to the hegemony of Baku clubs: “Because Armenia has occupied Nagorno-Karabakh in 1993, Qarabag FC holds home matches in Baku. The club, founded in Aghdam, Azerbaijan, on July 23, 1951 and called Qarabag (Aghdam) for the first time played in the USSR in 1966, in the Azerbaijani championship. The team had stopped playing in 1968-1976 years due to financial problems, and in 1977 again participated in internal competitions under the name Shafag. The team became champion of the country for the first time in 1988. After the collapse of the USSR, the first national championship was organized in 1992. Next year Qarabag became champion of Azerbaijan and won the national cup. But the war put an end to the joy and happiness of both the club and people of Aghdam. In 1993, the Imaret Stadium, where the home matches of team were hosted was bombarded during the Armenian occupation of Nagorno-Karabakh. The club lost stadium and all the resources at the same time and had to move to Baku”.
The article emphasizes that Qarabag is the club with the lowest budget in the group stage of the Champions League 2017/2018 season: Qarabag that has 2 players from Spain and a player from Bosnia and Herzegovina, Haiti, Brazil, Macedonia, Ukraine and the South African Republic each will be the lowest budget club with 12 million 28 thousand euros among the 32 teams”.
Notably, Qarabag FC performed at the Europa League group stage in the last three seasons.