Week 9 - Analysis by Serbülent Şengün
"Loneliness of the Security" - from Fenerbahçe-Adanaspor game
With two international and two U-21 International victories, the week started off hot for Turkish soccer. A 2-1 away victory against a very well organised and fighting Macedonia on Saturday was coupled with a 5-0 win against the weak Liechtenstein side to put Turkey on top of group 7 in the Euro 2004 qualification round with three wins in three games. Whereas the U-21 squad did no less, a 4-0 win against Macedonia was coupled with a 4-2 win against Portugal, one of the strongest teams in the U-21 qualifications. The team discipline and tactical flavour of the youngsters were indeed promising for better days in Turkish soccer.
The regular fixtures started off as usual in Friday. This week mostly, we saw the home teams sticking on to their guns, as 5 home teams ended the week with 3 points. Two games were tied, and only Besiktaş managed to grab the 3 points as visitors. A total of 31 goals were scored of which 15 were scored in two games. Football on the pitch was positive mostly with exceptions of a couple of quite boring games.
Fenerbahçe - Adanaspor : The game was played without spectators due to Fenerbahçes ban. Personally I think this is the reason why the game was unexciting in general. Both teams had serious chances to score, with Adanaspor getting more serious ones. Two first half goals within the first half hour set the score. An obvious deficiency in concentration was visible for both teams, Adanaspor did not fully believe that they could beat Fenerbahçe, whereas Fenerbahçe players missed an essential part of their game, their fans. The match also proved another point, football is not really football without fans. (1-1)
Malatyaspor Gençlerbirliği : What can you say about a game that has ended 5-4. Obviously both teams were attacking oriented. However this was a game in which defence defiance of both teams were also vivid, especially Gençlerbirliğis. 3 goals that Malatyaspor scored in the first half came from crosses and ended up within 3 metres to the goal line. How much sloppier can you defend your goal? Malatyaspors defending was not that awesome either. Albeit having the Macedonian hero of Milosevski on the goal line, who had a terrific game against England on Wednesday, Malatyaspor conceded four goals. Something to watch out for in the coming weeks. However, as I have stated before the fans of Malatyaspor, seem to be getting their moneys worth in every game on home field, and this week was no exception. After all one should not be talking this and that about a football game with a score like 5-4. (5-4)
Galatasaray Diyarbakırspor : Everybody expected a different game, with the league leaders on one side and the relegation candidates who have tried 26 players on the pitch in the first 9 weeks on the other side. However it was Diyarbakırspor who spent the chances to score so many times. Galatasaray players looked like they wanted the game to end the minute it started. The amount of scoring chances Diyarbakırspor wasted this season is running incredibly high, and somebody has to solve that problem soon or it is going to be goodbye to the superleague for the southeasterners. In the end it was the 23rd consecutive home victory for Galatasaray, now they need two more games to break Fenerbahçes 24 home game victory record. (1-0)
Gaziantepspor Samsunspor: Gaziantep has the momentum on their side, and they seem to find a way out of everygame. On this game Samsunspor players ununderstandable temper helped them a lot too. Two players from the Samsun side were sent due to disobedience to the referee. Samsunspor has started off this season pretty well, but they need to control their temper and aggressiveness if they want to continue like that. Gaziantep on the other side with young talent and aesthetic foreign players are a solid candidate for the top 3 spot and probably the Turkish cup. Brief note: Samsunspor scored their second goal with 9 players on the field, and that, personally, is a very good sign of team making in progress. (4-2)
Göztepespor İstanbulspor : The match between the two economically weak teams was a game of intense struggle for both sides. With the visitors managing to score early through Cenk, who has missed so many easy chances the previous weeks, the game continued with the home side eagerly looking to equalize. Göztepes attacks were pretty much from the right side of the field with youngster Göksel giving all that hes got. The home side got the equalizer on the last minute, giving some relief to the fans who, no matter what Göztepes standing in the league is, are there to fill the stadium. (1-1)
Elazığspor Altay: The match between two newcomers turned out to be a game with tempo, and goodwill on the field. Elazığspor managed to win their third on home field, whereas Altay, with continuing turbulence on the club management side went away pointless one more time. Elazığspor scored both goals in the second half with the latter in the last minute of the game to seal things off. Altay is now in the relegation zone, and things need to better off pretty soon. (2-0)
Ankaragücü Bursaspor: Interesting game indeed. In the first half both teams looked like they could score and all seemed out to be even. The second half however, Ankaragücü exploded. Great football by Augustine, one of the leading scorers of last year who kept a low profile till this week, accompanied by the work rate of Yılmaz and İsmet, led Ankaragücü to a 4 difference victory. Bursaspor, the team with great potential, has yet to prove their potential. But personally I believe their day is soon to come, maybe this defeat will put them on terms. (4-0)
Denizli Beşiktaş: Another full force struggle match. Both teams wanted to win it all, but failed to score for too long. The home side took the lead through a free kick, Beşiktaş answered back with another freekick. Just when everybody thought the game was going to end with a draw, Romanian Pancus header at the last 4 minutes stole the three points for Beşiktaş. The only visiting side to win this week Beşiktaş still has work to do, with too many key players injured. Denizli on the other need to believe a little more. (1-2)
Trabzonspor Kocaelispor: Finally, Trabzonspor scored two goals on home field. But more interestingly they played a beautiful game in the second half, with exceptional passing schemes led by Aurelio in the midfield. Kocaelispor with their new head coach Güvenç Kurtar (actually this is the third time he is with them in the past decade) showed no sign of revival. Kocaelispor look like they have anchored to the bottom of the league. Do I miss last years cup winners, I surely do. Trabzonspor on the other hand, if they can keep their concentration, might break many hearts in the coming weeks. Final note: it is good to have Mehmet Yılmaz back on the scoring sheets. The talented youngster was a dissapointment so far in the league, but he returned in class, and hopefully more will come from him (2-0)
Goals of the week :
1. Sergen Yalçın (Beşiktaş) : How can a freekick get classier. The magical left foot of the talented player left the Denizlispor goalkeeper helpless. One of the greatest freekicks scored so far. Hats off to Sergen.
2. Haim Revivo (Fenerbahçe) : Another brilliant freekick from another left footer. 25-30 meters range, brilliantly curved around the wall, hitting first the far post, then the net. Typical Revivo.
3. Mehmet Yılmaz (Trabzonspor) (second goal) : Mehmet Yılmaz drove in to the penalty zone from the left and passed it in for an assist however the attempt was deflected by the defence, the ball came curling back to him, he shot a marvelous curve ball from a very rough angle, beating the goalkeeper. Stylish indeed.
Team of the week : MKE Ankaragücü SK
Yep, they only played 45 minutes of football, but it was a 45 minutes full of intense attacking football. They used both flanks and they used the centre. They did everything to pleasure their fans, and ended up with four goals against Bursaspor and they missed another four serious chances. Hopefully the capital city strongholds will continue this up-tempo game in the coming weeks.
Player of the week : Augustine Ahinful (Ankaragücü)
He was not the player he used to be the last eight weeks, but this week he came back, and it is a pleasure indeed to have him back. He was there to head to ball when the crosses came in, he was there to shoot long range shots, he was there to finish, and he was there to assist. He was the main man behind Ankaragücüs stylish victory. Thumbs up.