AS one of the youngest clubs in Qatar, the story of Al Sailiya is really only beginning.
Founded in 1995, the Sailiyawi are still finding their feet as a young club hoping to play their part in the story of football in Qatar as it continues to grow.
For such a small club to try and compete with the big boys of the league is extremely tough, but with Sheikh Nasser bin Hamad bin Nasser Al Thani as their chairman, they have every right to believe that one day they might be able to compete with teams such as Al Rayyan, Al Sadd and Lekhwiya.
One thing is for sure; so for their story is nothing short of dramatic.
In 2006 they were relegated but fought their way back into the QSL in 2008.
Their journey between the leagues continued in 2011 when they once again suffered the drop – only to come straight back up the following season.
Fate alone saw them avoid the drop yet again last season. The club finished bottom of the league but a decision to expand the QSL to 14 teams ensured Sailiya’s place in the top flight was secure.
The club is determined to find some stability. Sailiya have had eight coaches in the last six years.
Maher Kanzari took the reigns for the beginning of the last campaign – but he was replaced by Abdullah Mubarak in January.
Mubarak’s reign ended along with the season and he was replaced by the experienced German Uli Stielike.
With a fearsome reputation as a player and a coach, Stielike will now try to impart his wisdom on Al Sailiya to help them continue their journey.