47 Facts About Ali Daei


Ali Daei is an Iranian football manager and former player.


Ali Daei played in the German Bundesliga for Arminia Bielefeld, Bayern Munich and Hertha Berlin.


Ali Daei is regarded as one of the greatest Asian footballers of all time.


Ali Daei was the world's top international goalscorer with 110, until his record was broken by Cristiano Ronaldo in 2021.


Ali Daei was born in Ardabil, Imperial Iran, to an Iranian Azerbaijani family.


Ali Daei graduated from Sharif University of Technology in Materials Engineering with a BSc.


Ali Daei began his playing career at 19 with hometown club Esteghlal Ardabil.


Ali Daei scored 23 goals in 38 games for the club from 1994 to 1996.


This, coupled with the Iranian national team's scheduling, Ali Daei had found very little time for playing.


Ali Daei was unhappy with his club position and decided to move to Hertha BSC before the end of his three-year contract when Bayern won the championship title in the 1999 Bundesliga.


Ali Daei became the first Asian player to feature in a UEFA Champions League match.


Ali Daei was playing in numerous continental friendlies against world-class opposition, yet was still unable to maintain a stable position in his club's starting line-up.


Ali Daei joined the UAE league at 34 years of age, signing a contract with Al-Shabab as a free agent.


In 2003, Ali Daei quit the UAE team and joined his team in Tehran, Persepolis.


Ali Daei moved from Persepolis to Saba Battery on a free transfer for a modest contract of around $300,000.


Ali Daei spent two years at Saba Battery, scoring 23 goals, winning the Hazfi Cup and participating in the Asian Champions League.


On 6 March 2007, Ali Daei was fined $2000 and suspended for four games by the Iranian Football Federation after the incidents in a league game where he delivered a head-butt to the face of Sheys Rezaei.


Ali Daei was named the World's top scorer in official international competitions by the International Federation of Football History and Statistics, having scored 20 goals in competitive matches for Iran in 1996, including his famous four-goal haul against South Korea in Asian Cup 1996.


Ali Daei joined the exclusive circle of players with a century of caps.


Ali Daei has 148 caps for Iran and, as of 13 September 2019, is ranked 28th among the world's most capped players list.


Ali Daei was called up to join Team Melli on 6 June 1993 in an ECO Cup tournament held in Tehran, where he made his debut for Iran against Pakistan.


Ali Daei continued his national team appearances and was named the top scorer of the final Asian round of 1994 FIFA World Cup qualifications with four goals in 5 matches.


On 17 November 2004, Daei became the first male footballer with 100 international goals when he scored four times against Laos in a 2006 FIFA World Cup qualifier.


From Iranian media calling for his retirement, Ali Daei has always defended his position in Team Melli and has rejected that he was too old to play for the team.


Ali Daei ended his international career with 109 goals, an all-time record which stood until September 2021 when it was surpassed by Portuguese striker Cristiano Ronaldo.


Ali Daei captained Islamic Azad University football team in 2007 World Interuniversity Games, scoring a hat-trick in the final match against University of Osijek and winning the gold medal.


In 2007 Summer Universiade, Ali Daei was in charge as the head coach of the Iran student's national team.


Ali Daei was technical manager of the Islamic Azad University team in 2009 World Interuniversity Games.


Ali Daei was later officially announced as the full-time manager.


However, Ali Daei did lead Saipa to an Asian Champions League quarterfinal birth before leaving to take over as the full-time manager of the Iranian national football team.


In 2009, Ali Daei turned down a job offer as manager of Rah Ahan.


On 28 December 2009, Ali Daei was chosen as a coach of Persepolis.


Ali Daei had many people against him while at Persepolis, including the chairman Habib Kashani and after contention with Kashani, he stated that "I won't work with Kashani Anymore".


Under the management of Ali Daei, Persepolis won back-to-back trophies for the first time in 13 seasons.


On 14 July 2011, Ali Daei signed a one-year contract as head coach of Rah Ahan.


Ali Daei officially began his work with Persepolis on 1 June 2013.


On 1 July 2015, Ali Daei became head coach of Saba Qom, signing a two-year contract.


Ali Daei became manager of Saipa on 14 May 2017, a club where he started his coaching career in 2006 and led them to the league title in 2007.


Ali Daei was one of the Personnel involved in the 2022 FIFA World Cup draw held in Qatar on 1 April 2022.


Ali Daei has made very significant charitable donations and has made appearances in charity football matches worldwide.


Ali Daei appeared in a UNICEF commercial with David Beckham and Madeleine Albright, and has regularly been seen working with the organization.


Ali Daei featured on 18 July 2007 in 90 Minutes for Mandela, a match between the Africa XI and the Rest of World XI to celebrate the birthday of Nelson Mandela.


On 17 March 2012, Ali Daei's car overturned while driving back to Tehran from Isfahan with his brother.


Rah Ahan's Media Officer, Hossein Ghadousi stated that "Ali Daei is in a stable condition with regards to his vital signs and is not currently in any acute danger as a result of the accident".


Ali Daei was transferred to Laleh hospital in Tehran the following day.


In November 2020, Ali Daei was attacked by two thieves while they were trying to steal his gold necklace in Tehran.


On 26 December 2022, Ali Daei said that an international flight carrying his wife, Mona Farrokhazari, and daughter, which was heading to Dubai was forced to return to Kish Island, due to his support for anti-government protests.