Ahmad Elrich (born 30 May 1981 in Sydney) is an Australian football (soccer) midfielder who is currently playing for the Central Coast Mariners in the A-league. He has also played for the Australian national team.
Ahmad began his professional career at the Parramatta Eagles, his home club. Ahmed was born just West of the club's home ground. After one season with the Eagles, Ahmed was given a spot with new NSL club Parramatta Power
in the clubs inaugural squad. Ahmed cemented a first-team spot as a free-flowing winger here, including a memorable 2003-04 season where he was one of the league's leading assist getters, and played in the Grand Final at just 22. Unfortunately his time at the Power was cut short, as the club and NSL met its demise. Rather than wait around the State League's for the start of the new National Competition, Ahmed decided he would try his luck overseas. He moved to South Korean side Busan I'cons
. After a successful season, Ahmed made his move to the big-time, the English Premier League.
Elrich signed a 3 year deal with Fulham
in the Summer of 2005 from K-League
club Busan I'cons
. He was loaned out to F.C. Lyn Oslo
from April to May 2006.
After signing for Fulham and making his debut against Liverpool FC, in an English Premiership game, Elrich's first team appearances were few and far between, but despite signing a 3 year contract in 2006, his Fulham future looked in doubt after not being given a squad number for the 2007-08 season and Fulham confirmed Elrich's departure on 4 September 2007.
Return to Australia
After being rejected by the Central Coast Mariners
due to fitness issues, Elrich signed a contract with the Wellington Phoenix
in the A-League
as their marquee
player On 21 September 2007. Elrich scored his first goal, in his first home game, for the Wellington Phoenix
against Central Coast Mariners
on 21 October 2007, which he described as the 'best goal of his career'. Other than this extraordinary moment, it was another season to forget for one of Australia's extraordinary young-guns. At the end of the 2007-08 season, Ahmad left the Phoenix to move back to Australia, moving to Central Coast Mariners to link up with several former Power teammates. Ahmad is often made fun of by Wellington Phoenix supporters. Tee-shirts have been made with Ahmad's face in the centre and the Phrase "Got Pie?" written below. This is written in respect to Ahmad's weight, as he was considered unfit and overweight by many Wellington Supporters.
He represented Australia
at the 2004 Summer Olympics
. His inactivity for Fulham
was seen as the key factor in him not being selected for the Australian World Cup
On the 6 September 2006, Elrich suffered a serious knee injury whilst playing for Australia in an Asian Cup qualifier against Kuwait.
He is of Lebanese
descent and is the older brother of Newcastle Jets
player Tarek Elrich