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Khankendi City Stadium May Host Azerbaijan Cup 1/8-Round Match

By Timucin Turksoy November 25, 2023

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The Khankendi City Stadium / Courtesy

A 1/8-round football match of the Azerbaijan Cup may occur at Khankendi City Stadium in the country's Karabakh (Garabagh) region.

According to local media reports, Azerbaijani champions Qarabağ FK may face the winner of the MOIK-Aghdash/Jabrayil tie in the cup game on December 21.

However, officials from the Sports and Youth Ministry and Qarabağ FK football club have not confirmed this information yet.

“We have not received any official offer yet,” Qarabağ FK Director Emrah Chelikel told local media.

In the meantime, Khankendi City Stadium could also host the final game of the Azerbaijan Cup next June. According to local sources, representatives from the Sports and Youth Ministry toured the venue in October to evaluate its technical capabilities.

The 15,000-seat Khankendi City Stadium was inaugurated in 1956 and was initially named after Soviet leader Joseph Stalin. In 1991, it was officially registered as “Khankendi City Stadium.” However, during the occupation of the Karabakh region by Armenia, the sports venue was unlawfully named “Stepanakert Stadium” by the illegal Armenian separatist regime in Azerbaijani territory.

On September 19-20, the Azerbaijan Armed Forces conducted one-day anti-terror measures in the Karabakh region to neutralize illegal Armenian armed formations and their military infrastructure, restoring Azerbaijan’s sovereignty over the region. The separatist regime announced its self-dissolution on September 28.

On October 15, President Ilham Aliyev hoisted the state flag of Azerbaijan in Khankendi, symbolizing the city’s liberation after more than three decades of illegal Armenian occupation.

In October, the government of Azerbaijan initiated the renovation of Khankendi City Stadium. Seats colored in the so-called flag of the separatists are being replaced with new ones. The stadium’s artificial grass and dressing rooms will also be renewed.