Best Armenian football clubs – which are they? How popular is football in Armenia? What history does football have in Armenia? These are common question that may arise if one is not familiar with Armenians’ love towards football.
Armenians belong to those nations that can’t get on without football. Football is the most popular sport in Armenia. Of course, not everyone is a huge football fan, but when it comes to Armenian national team, or local FCs, then everyone seems to be into football.
Here you’ll know general information about Armenian football, its history and most of Armenian football clubs, such as Alashkert FC, Shirak FC, FC Ararat, etc.
History of Armenian Football and Best Armenian Football Clubs
Armenian football has developed in Armenia at the beginning of the 20th century in Western Armenia. The first Armenian football clubs existed already in early 1920s. At those times football clubs like “Tork”, “Hamazasp”, “Kilikia”, “Ararat” etc. were competing with English, German and Turkish football teams.
In 1925, the organization called “Dinamo” created a football team with the same name. Different football teams were also formed in other cities of Armenia. The most famous ones were the teams of Alexadrapol (Gyumri) and Yerevan. There were different friendly matches between those teams which were held with great enthusiasm.
One of the most memorable years for Armenian football history is 1930. In 1930 Armenia was playing with Moscow, the strongest team of those times. Armenia ended the match with 0-0 score. This was a rather good result for such a new formed team.
The other and more important event was when Armenian team first took part in international competition in that year and played with German team. Though they lost, the international interest towards Armenian football raised after this match.
The most productive years for Armenian football were the years of Soviet Union. FC Ararat was the most famous and legendary team during the period of Soviet Union, which is remembered and worshiped till our days. One of the other famous football clubs was Shirak FC, which was founded in 1958 and was active till 1991.
Armenian Football Today
Armenian football also remains the most popular sport during the period of independent Armenia. Football Federation of Armenia was founded on 18 January 1992. The federation has successfully established relations with FIFA and UEFA.
However, the difficult periods, war and lack of financial resources caused lots of up and downs for Armenian football. Many professional football clubs retired and others were not as successful as in past years.
Armenian football is on its way to gain past success and become great again. Nowadays the positive changes in Armenian football are getting obvious day by day. The best Armenian football clubs are considered Alashkert FC, FC Ararat, Banants FC, Shirak FC, Gandzasar Kapan FC and Pyunik FC.
Best Armenian Football Clubs #1: FC Ararat
FC Ararat is the most popular club in Armenia. Ararat plays at the Armenian Premiere League at the moment. The club was established in early 1935 with Spartak sport society. Ararat participated in the Soviet Top League in 1949.
They demonstrated a poor game, which left the fans upset. However, it took only a few years to become one of the bests throughout Soviet Union. At first FC Ararat was called Spartak and only years later renamed as Ararat.
FC Ararat won the Soviet Championship Cup in 1973, that’s why this football club is mostly associated with this year. The dissolution of Soviet Union and the establishment of independent Armenia was a complete roller-coaster for Armenian football. So, it had it influence on FC Ararat too.
The headquarters of the club are located in Aragatsotn street 2, Yerevan. The club is owned by Armenian businessmen Vartan Sirmakes and Hrach Kaprielyan from 1999.
Best Armenian Football Clubs #2: Alashkert FC
Alashkert FC also belongs to Best Armenian Football clubs. It is based in Yerevan and currently plays at the Armenian Premier League. In comparison with Ararat FC, Alashkert FC is a younger club.
It was founded in 1990 and later in 2011 refounded by Armenian businessman Bagrat Navoyan. The headquarters of the club are situated on Saryan street 25 Yerevan.
At first the main training stadium was located in Martuni, later in 2013 the club purchased Nairi Stadium in Yerevan and the club was officially relocated from Martuni to Yerevan. The manager of Alashkert FC is Karen Barseghyan and the main coach is Abraham Khashmanyan.
Best Armenian Football Clubs #3: Shirak FC
Football club Shirak is commonly known as Shirak is one of the oldest Armenian football clubs which are based in Gyumri. Shirak FC was founded in 1958 and is the only football club, that participated in all seasons of Armenian Premier League.
During 1970-s Shirak used to play under the name of Olympia, however they never had opportunity to play in Soviet first league. Since 2010 the head of Shirak FC is Armenian businessman and a member of National Assembly of Armenia Arman Sahakyan.
The team successfully participated in 3 European cups: The Champions League the UEFA cup and Intertoto cup. Shirak FC belongs to those football clubs that never changed its stadium. The Gyumri City Stadium is its official home ground of Shirak.
Best Armenian Football Clubs #4: FC Gandzasar Kapan
FC Gandzasar Kapan is another famous Armenian Football club, which is mostly known as Gandzasar. The club is based in the town of Kapan, Syunik Province. The name Gandzasar translated into English means “Treasure Mountain”.
The headquarters of the club are located on Shinararner street 1, Kapan. FC Gandzasar is owned by «Zangezur Copper and Molybdenum Combine» Closed Joint-Stock Company since 25 February 2015.
This football club was founded in 2002. They spent 2 years in Armenian First League and only then were promoted and started playing in Armenian Premier League. The home ground of Gandzasar is Gandzasar Stadium which is also known as Kapan City Stadium. The coach of the football club is Sergey Puchkov.
Best Armenian Football Clubs #5: Pyunik FC
This professional Armenian football club, known as Pyunik is based in Yerevan. The name Pyunik knows every Armenian. This club is one of the most popular Armenian football clubs. The headquarters of the club are situated on Masis street, 7, Yerevan.
The training center of Pyunik FC is situated in Kentron Distinct. The owner of the club is Armenian businessman Samvel Aleksanyan. Pyunik was founded in 1992 and won the cup of Armenian Premier League in the same year.
The former owner of Pyunik also made great efforts to make that football club one of the best Armenian football clubs. He brought best Armenian players from other clubs to Pyunik. He also invited other foreign players from different countries such as from Mali, Cameroon, Argentina and Romania.
Then in 2002 Pyunik won Armenian Cup and advanced to the second round of Champions League. The club won the title of Armenian Premier League ten times in a row. This was a great result for independent Armenian football.
Pyunik Used to play in Hrazdan Stadium between 1992 and 1999. After the renovation of Vazgen Sargsyan Republican Stadium they moved to there. Afterwards, Pyunik used to play its home games only in Pyunik Stadium, which was opened in 2004. From 2013 Pyunik uses Yerevan Football Academy Stadium for their home games. The chairman of the club is Rafik Hayrapetyan and the main coach is Sargis Hovsepyan.
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