Mekelakeya is the 2nd oldest club in Ethiopia. Mekelakeya’s establishment dates back to 1946, although it was fragile in early 1990’s. The club achieved promotion to the top flight league in 2004/05 season after reestablishment. They finished 5th in their maiden season in 2004/05. If Mekelakeya wins the game, they will lift the EFF Cup for a record 13th time, 3 ahead of historic rivals Kidus Giorgis.
Mekelakeya’s, nicknamed Toru, successful years in EFF Cup was in late 1940’s and early 1950’s. Mekelakeya won more than half of the EFF Cup in the period between 1946 and 1956 (They have won 7 EFF Cup in that very moment). The rest EFF Cup won by Mekelakeya were in 1974/75, 1981/82, 2005/06 and 2012/13 seasons. Mekelakeya won the trophy 5 times between 1946 and 1954. They were known to the general public as Tore Serawit. After they changed their name to Mechale (1955-1984), they won the EFF Cup 4 times. During the Derge regime they were called Medere Tore (1985-1991), they won it ones while after the downfall of the Derge they changed their name to Mekelakeya, and were able to win the EFF Cup twice.
Mekelakeya is the only side that won the EFF Cup for three successive times. They won it 3 years in a row in two different occasions (1948-1950 and 1953-55).
Hawassa Kenema doesn’t have a history in EFF Cup that is comparable with Mekelakeya. Hawassa Kenema, incepted in 1985, won the EFF Cup only once after overcoming Ethiopian Banks (now Commercial Bank of Ethiopia) in 2004/05 and reached the final during the Ethiopian Millennium in 2007/08 season in which they lost to Ethiopia Bunna.
The EFF Cup started in 1945. Thus far from the get go 22 clubs have won the EFF Cup. From the 22 clubs, the 12 clubs are still competing in Ethiopian football. Eritrea Shoe, Kibure Zebegna, Red Sea, British Military Mission, Asmara, Eremejachen, Hintsa Construction, Hawassa Dukate, Wolaitta Tusa and Policeportiva are teams that won the EFF Cup but no longer exist in Ethiopian football because either they ceased to exit or couldn’t compete in Ethiopia after Eritrea got independence in 1993.
In 70 years history of the EFF Cup, the tourney wasn’t held in 14 occasions. 1960-1968, 1977/78, 1990/91 and 2011/12 were the years the competition was abandoned.
Mekelakeya tops the chart with 12 EFF Cups while Kidus Giorgis are second with 10. Ethiopia Bunna and Electric won it 5 and 4 times respectively. Dedebit, Ethiopian Insurance, Red Sea, Federal Police (Omedla), Kibure Zebegna and Eritrea Shoe managed to lift the cup twice. Hawassa Kenema, Mugher Cement, Harar Beer (now Harar City), and Commercial Bank won it one time.
The winners of the EFF Cup progresses to the CAF Confedration Cup. If one club won both the league and the EFF Cup, then the runner up in the EFF Cup will compete in the CAF Confederation Cup. In retrospect these are some of the clubs who progress to the CAF Confedration without winning the EFF Cup final. Guna Trading (1998/99 lost to Kidus Giorgis), Ethiopian Insurance (2000/01 lost to Electric), Commercial Bank (2009/10 lost to Kidus Giorgis) and Dedebit (2011/12 progressed because they finished runner ups in the Ethiopian Premier League. The EFF Cup was not held on that season).