Ali Al Haj
Ali Al Haj in 2018
|Full name||Ali Jamal Al Haj|
|Date of birth||2 February 2001|
|Place of birth||Lebanon|
|Height||1.65 m (5 ft 5 in)|
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 13 April 2019|
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 22 March 2019
On 3 March 2018, he became the first player born in the 21st century to score in the Lebanese Football League, as well as the only player to have scored in three Lebanese national divisions in a single season, scoring with the U17, U19 and senior side of Nejmeh.
Club career[edit | edit source]
Nejmeh[edit | edit source]
2017–18: Debut season[edit | edit source]
Coming through the youth system, Ali Al Haj's first team debut for Nejmeh came during the 2017–18 season on 5 September 2017 as a sub against Tadamon Sour, a game Nejmeh won 0–2. On 3 March 2018, on his first match as a starter, he scored his first goal for the senior team against Safa’ in a 1–3 away victory. He became the youngest player to score in the league, beating the previous record set by his brother Youssef Al Haj, as well as the only player to have scored at least a goal in three official national divisions in a single season, having scored 14 and 27 goals respectively in the U17 and U19 league.
Al Haj played seven matches in the league (two as a starter and five as a substitute) for a total of 181 minutes, scoring and assisting once. He also scored seven goals for the U17 team in the Lebanese Youth League Final 6 (21 in total), coming second in the League with the Nejmeh youth team. For his performances, Al Haj won the Lebanese Young Player of the Year award for the 2017–18 season.
On July 2018 it was reported that Ali Al Haj had undergone a trial with Austrian Football Bundesliga side Admira Wacker, with a professional contract expected to be signed. However, the transfer fell through and Al Haj decided to remain at Nejmeh.
2018–19: First Elite Cup and AFC Cup debut[edit | edit source]
Al Haj played in the 2018–19 Arab Club Champions Cup for Nejmeh, in which he scored the match winner during stoppage time against Al-Faisaly on 20 May 2018 in the play-off round; the match ended 1–2 for his team. The Lebanese player also scored a goal against Salam Zgharta in the 2018 Lebanese Elite Cup, which he won after Nejmeh beat Akhaa Ahli 1–0 in the final. On 2 December 2018, Ali Al Haj won the Lebanon Football League U19 Championship with Nejmeh U19. In the Lebanese FA Cup Round of 16, played on 29 January 2019, he scored a brace in a 6–0 win against Takadom Ankoun. On 25 February 2019, Al Haj made his debut in the AFC Cup coming on as a substitute in the 77th minute against Al Wehdat in a 1–0 away defeat.
International career[edit | edit source]
Youth career[edit | edit source]
On 30 January 2019, Ali Al Haj was called up for the Lebanon U23 national team for a trial in view of the 2020 AFC U23 qualification. On 15 March 2019, he was called up for the final 23 man squad alongside his brother Youssef. Al Haj played twice for the under-23 team, against the United Arab Emirates on 22 March and against the Maldives on 26 March, in both instances coming on as a substitute.
Style of play[edit | edit source]
A skilled forward, Ali Al Haj can play on the flanks as a winger on either side, as well as centrally, both behind the striker and as a centre-forward. He has been described has having more individual skills than his father, Jamal, who was also a footballer at Nejmeh.
Personal life[edit | edit source]
Honours and achievements[edit | edit source]
- As of 2 December 2018
Club[edit | edit source]
- Lebanese Football League: runner up 2017–18
- Lebanese FA Cup: runner up 2017–18
- Lebanese Super Cup: runner up 2018
- Lebanese Elite Cup: 2018
- Lebanese Football League U19: 2018–19
- Lebanese Football League U17: runner up 2017–18
Individual[edit | edit source]
Records[edit | edit source]
- First player born in the 21st century to score in the Lebanese Football League
- First player to score in three Lebanese national divisions in a single season (U17, U19 and senior)
References[edit | edit source]
- اللواء, جريدة. "نجلا جمال الحاج يقودا النجمة لاسقاط العهد والابتعاد بالصدارة!". جريدة اللواء (in العربية). Retrieved 4 December 2018.
- "Lebanon - Ali Al Haj - Profile with news, career statistics and history - Soccerway". us.soccerway.com. Retrieved 24 May 2018.
- "Tadamon Sour VS Nejmeh". lebanonfg.com. Retrieved 23 May 2018.
- "Safa VS Nejmeh". lebanonfg.com. Retrieved 23 May 2018.
- Hayek, Tony (7 March 2018). "Nejmeh accentue la pression sur le Ahed - Tony Hayek". L'Orient-Le Jour (in français). Retrieved 29 January 2019.
- "Ali Al Hajj Stats". lebanonfg.com. Retrieved 23 May 2018.
- "Football | Lebanese Youth League Final 6 – Round 7 Results". YOUR HOME OF NEWS. 22 April 2018. Retrieved 23 May 2018.
- "Lebanese League U17 2017/2018". goalzz.com.
- اللواء, جريدة. "النجماوي حسن معتوق أفضل لاعب في لبنان!". جريدة اللواء (in العربية). Retrieved 19 February 2019.
- Lebanon, Football. "علي الحاج على مشارف نادي Admira النمساوي". football-lebanon.com. Retrieved 7 April 2019.
- LiveScore, SofaScore.com. "AlFaisaly Nejmeh SC live score, video stream and H2H results - SofaScore". www.sofascore.com. Retrieved 23 May 2018.
- "Lebanese Elite Cup 2018". www.goalzz.com. Retrieved 3 August 2018.
- "Al Akhaa Al Ahli vs. Al Nejmeh - 25 August 2018 - Soccerway". int.soccerway.com. Retrieved 29 January 2019.
- "lebanese league- u19". www.goalzz.com. Retrieved 2 December 2018.
- "Al Taqdom Anqoon vs. Al Nejmeh - 29 January 2019 - Soccerway". int.soccerway.com. Retrieved 29 January 2019.
- "Al Wihdat vs. Al Nejmeh - 25 February 2019 - Soccerway". us.soccerway.com. Retrieved 5 May 2019.
- Lebanon, Football. "قائمة الأولمبي المتأخرة بغياب المحترفين". football-lebanon.com. Retrieved 15 March 2019.
- "AFCS | UAE v Lebanon". stats.the-afc.com. Retrieved 24 March 2019.
- "AFCS | Lebanon v Maldives". stats.the-afc.com. Retrieved 26 March 2019.
- Lebanon, Football. "المدرب الوطني محمود برجاوي | علي الحاج أفضل من والده". football-lebanon.com. Retrieved 2019-04-07.
- "جمال الحاج: النجمة يسير في الطريق الصحيح - نمر جبر". An-Nahar. 21 September 2017. Retrieved 4 December 2018.
- "Lebanon - Ali Al Haj - Profile with news, career statistics and history - Soccerway". int.soccerway.com. Retrieved 29 January 2019.
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