Free football predictions and tips for Azerbaijan Premier League
WHAT IS THE AZERBAIJAN PREMIER LEAGUE?
The Azerbaijan Premier League is officially known as Azərbaycan Premyer Liqası. This is the top division in Azerbaijani club football. The competition was first organized in 2007 as a successor of the Top Division (1992-2007).
The winner qualifies for the UEFA Champions League from the first qualifying round while the last-ranked team is relegated to the First Division.
Azerbaijan Premier League
HISTORY OF THE AZERBAIJAN PREMIER LEAGUE
The Azerbaijan Premier League in the 1990s was dominated by clubs like Neftchi Baku, Kapaz, Turan Tovuz, and Shamkir. However, financial struggles had a bad impact on local teams and most teams like Khazri Buzovna, Shamkir, Vilash Masalli, and Shafa Baku were bust because of increasing debts.
In 1997, Kapad was considered the unbeaten team with the final record for the 1997-98 league campaign stood at 22 wins, 4 draws, and 0 losses, out of 26 games total. This is an unbeaten run that was not matched in any single season by any team in an Azarbaijan league division.
The country’s football received a major blow in 2002 when UEFA imposed a two-year ban because of a long-standing conflict between the Association of Football Federations of Azerbaijan and the majority of the country's top-flight clubs. The domestic championship was disbanded due to the conflict, and the top clubs prevented their players from playing for the national teams.
Qarabağ was the first-ever team from Azerbaijan to play in the UEFA Europa League play-off round during the seasons 2009–10 and 2010–11. Few chances were given for qualification to the next round, although the Aghdam side caused quite a stir against favorites Rosenborg, Honka, Twente, and Wisła Kraków.
In the 2010s, Neftchi emerged as a champion after 6 years of the unsuccessful run. In the following season, Neftchi got the seventh title in the club’s history with its domestic success. Besides, it also became the first Azerbaijan team that advanced to the group stage of a European competition. In 2014, Qarabağ became the second and most successful Azerbaijani team which can enter the group stage of the European Cup. IN 2017, the team became the first Azarbaijan team to advance to the group stage of the UEFA Champions League.
HOW IS THE FORMAT OF THE AZERBAIJAN PREMIER LEAGUE?
Today, the league is contested by 8 clubs, in which the season runs from August to May. The competition follows the usual double round-robin format. During the game season, each club plays every other team four times, twice at home and twice away, for a total of 28 game weeks.
The results of the teams are ranked by points. Teams get three points for a win, one point for a draw, and 0 points for a loss.
The champions of the league enter the second qualifying stage of the UEFA Champions League. Whereas, the second and third-ranked teams qualify for the first qualifying round of the UEFA Europa League. A fourth spot is given to the champions of the Azerbaijan Cup, who also qualify for the first round of the Europa League. However, the last-place team of the Azerbaijan Premier League has to say bye with the competition to play in the Azerbaijan First League in the next season.
8 teams in the 2016-17 Azerbaijan Premier League
SPONSORSHIPS OF THE PREMYER LIQA
- From the 2009 to 2011 season, Unibank was the main sponsor of the top league. Therefore, the Premyer Liqa was also called the Unibank Premyer Liqası.
- From 2012 to 2019, the league was renamed Topaz Premyer Liqası due to the sponsorship of Topaz.
- In August 2019, PFL became the replacement of Topaz to become the new tender for sponsorship.
- Besides, the Premier League also has a number of official partners and suppliers. Nike is the organization providing match days for the season.
WHICH TEAMS ARE PLAYING IN THE 2020-21 AZERBAIJAN PREMIER LEAGUE?
In the 2020-21 season, there are 8 teams taking part in the Premier League. Qarabağ and Neftchi Baku are the leading teams in the league.
TOP BEST PLAYERS IN THE AZERBAIJAN PREMIER LEAGUE
As of the 4 May 2021, N. Ələsgərov from Neftçi Baku is the best player of the season with 18 goals in 23 matches. The second one- M. Emreli from Qarabağ is chasing very closely with 16 goals in 19 matches. They are both young and talented players of the league.
TITLES BY CLUBS IN THE PREMIER LEAGUE
Neftchi Baku and Qarabağ are the two best teams in the Azerbaijan Premier League. They have the same 8 times reaching the highest titles and many times standing in the top three of the league table.