ANKARAGUCU - FIRING ON ALL CYLINDERS AGAIN !
Greetings Kankas and Kankies.
It was a sunny Spring afternoon in Ankara which found us sitting outside of The Chopin Bar without cold weather gear for the first time this year. High spirits, optimism, and cold EFES were the order of the day with Maniac Kanka, Battle Damaged Kanka, Mountaineering Kanka and Kankie, Rip Off Kanka and yours truly present.
ANKARAGUCU 2 Gencler OFTASspor 0
Into the Stadium then where we were joined by Yankee Kanka, Kaleci Kanka, Alpine Kanka, Mini Alpine Kankas Mark I and Mark II (yes Oz, we must find names for those two footie fanatic boys !!).
There were lots of snide comments directed towards the Gencler Kankas, eg, where’s Oz Kanka ? Where is their loyalty for Gencler’s `best team` ? I said…… perhaps they are waiting for the `Big One` on Wednesday and that a routine `bread and butter` league match was too boring to attend ??!! Answers awaited in the Comments Section !!!
The ANKARAGUCU tribunes were full (as usual) and there must have been 10,000 there making lots of noise (as usual) ! Maniac Kanka did a head count of the `away` end and made it 39. However, he was exaggerating (as usual) ….. I made it 38 !! Incidentally, they were like statues throughout the match. Reminded me of those nice quiet polite Alkmaar supporters !!!
The match started at a furious pace with ANKARAGUCU taking the match to OFTAS and from one of their early attacks went into the lead in the 3rd minute.
Gokhan swung the ball over from the right wing and with the OFTAS defence `sleeping` it fell nicely for the inrushing Murat Erdogan to side foot it in from close range.
What a start ! Up the volume of the singing and let’s have another goal. Wrong on the latter point !!
ANKARAGUCU was still involved in full-on attack, but OFTAS was beginning to settle after their shaky start. They were also becoming more physical and some hefty tackles were going in. However, ANKARAGUCU was not being intimidated and continued to play footie with Erdogan winning my Man of the Match award for his endeavours.
Apart from slotting in the first goal, he seemed to be at the heart of all the ANKARAGUCU attacks with Gokhan also causing problems for the OFTAS defence.
Just before half time, Kirita pulled-up injured and was substituted by Murat Duruer. Battle Damaged Kanka and I agreed that it was either a hamstring or a pulled muscle which we hope is not serious.
Into the 2nd half and ANKARAGUCU was again first out of the starting blocks. OFTAS was again proving obdurate in defence and laying into ANKARAGUCU with some crunching tackles.
Then halfway through the 2nd half Olgay of OFTAS received a red card for head-butting Bebbe. Shame on him !!
This was the signal to step up the pressure and it was all out attack now from ANKARAGUCU with Ibrahim Said and Gokhan going close.
Ibrahim Said seems to have settled-in well and looks like becoming a permanent fixture in midfield. He seems to have formed an understanding between Erdogan, Bebbe and Gokhan which augers well for the future. Cem Can also had a good match and played as well as I have ever seen him.
Serkan was only troubled once in the match when a screamer went inches past his post, but in all honesty it would have been a travesty if it had gone in.
The 2nd goal finally arrived with 10 minutes of the match remaining. Bebbe and Gokhan combined well to send Jaba through and he lashed in an unstoppable shot to put the match beyond OFTAS.
Jaba had replaced the ineffective Duruer only 5 minutes prior to scoring. Hats off to Hakan Kutlu for an inspired substitution !!
The players did a lap of honour at the insistence of the tribunes and after Jaba had despatched his shirt into Gecikondu, we had a close-up of a large stunning tattoo on his right arm. Battle Damaged Kanka is no doubt relieved that Jaba is not a kanka otherwise he might be pressing him for the award of The Most Stylish Kanka of the Season !!!
Back to the Cappadokia and a pleasant change to be there for celebrations and not commiserations !
A valuable 3 points then and a climb up to 8th in the League. However, I’m sure there will be no complacency next week when we travel up to Tea Country to take on Rize who are already involved in the relegation `dog fight`.
All the best from Eski Kanka Jim