Bahrain Football Association

It's believed that football in Bahrain has started in 1919 at Al Hidaya Al Khalifiya School in Muharraq, which was the second capital of Bahrain. Two teams were officially founded in 1928 – Al Khalifi in Muharraq and Al Watani in Manama. These two teams have met on several occasions, while both played against other teams representing the expatriate communities in Bahrain.

As time passed by, more local teams emerged, resulting in the formation of the Bahrain national team. Their first international match was played in 1931 against Iraq in Basra. A committee, tasked at supervising domestic competitions, was later founded in 1945. At that time, local championships featured a combination of national and expatriate teams, representing local clubs, companies and establishments.

In 1957, the first sporting association was declared in Bahrain (the Bahrain Sports Association), also managing competitions in basketball, handball and volleyball.

Four years later, the first football stadium was inaugurated in Muharraq, which had a capacity crowd of 7,000. But with such limited stands made available, a bigger stadium was a must, resulting in the establishment of Isa Town Stadium in 1968, which was capable of holding up to 14,000 supporters.

The first-ever game hosted by the new stadium was in the same year between Bahrain national team and an amateur team from England, which ended for the latter 4-0.

The stadium was later the venue for the First edition of the Gulf Cup in 1970. Since that time, Bahrain football saw major leaps, either on the national, regional or international levels.

Between 1970 and present time, Bahrain's juniors had several achievements, the first of which was a third-place finish at the 19th Asian Championship in Tehran in 1977.

In 1986, Bahrain's junior team rose up to second place in the 26th Asian Cup held in Riyadh, in Saudi Arabia.

The same category team came second in Group 'D' in the Asian Cup qualifier in 1996 in Damascus.

In 1998, the junior team finished second in their group in the Asian Cup qualifier in Qatar, then were third in the sixth Friendship Championship in Muscat in the following year.

Bahrain's junior team claimed second position in their group in the Asian Cup qualifier in Kuwait, where they also took fourth place in the 2002 Asian Cup qualifier.

Bahrain continued to show strength in this age group category as the team managed second place in both the 2003 and 2006 Asian Cup qualifiers held in Kuwait and Jordan, respectively.

But the Bahraini juniors' first major achievement was winning the International Football Championship, organized as part of Salalah Fall Festival in 2005 in Oman.​

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