Ankaragücü 0-0 Bursaspor
On Sunday afternoon, Yenikent Asaş Stadium played host the biannual love fest between Ankaragücü and Bursaspor. With 19 Mayis currently out of commission due to problems with the pitch, a fleet of municipal buses transported the loyal legions of fans across the barren Anatolian plains to what is affectionately known on this blog as "The Stadium from Hell." The result, however, was more like something from purgatory, with the sister clubs playing to yet another scoreless draw. Such has been a frustratingly common finish for Ankaragücü since the resumption of the season. Despite millions spent on the acquisition of new talent, we still can't seem to put the ball in the back of the net. Relegation remains a specter looming in the distance.
Philly Kanka and I were the only ones to brave the dreary winter weather and make the trek to Yenikent. As we approached the stadium, we noticed a distinct splash of blue and yellow against the otherwise bleak landscape. It soon became evident that "The Stadium from Hell," previously home to the much maligned Ankaraspor, has officially been rebranded for Ankaragücü. Images of our players are now perched atop the stands and the club insignia adorns the outer walls. It seems safe to say that we’ll be making a few more trips to our new home in cehennem this season.
Before the match, bedlam reigned outside the stadium. In addition to the chanting throngs of supporters, there was mass confusion about how to get tickets. The officials knew we needed them, but didn’t seem to know where they could be bought since, in true Ankaragücü fashion, all of the ticket windows were closed. Fortunately, Philly Kanka spotted a guy with a stack of about five hundred in his hand and sent me off to procure two for us. I forced my way to the front of the teeming crowd that had amassed around him and asked in my best yabancı accent, “hocam, iki tane, lütfen.” I was promptly handed the requisite tickets for free.
As the result would suggest, the match was not an exhilarating affair. The starting lineup included the new additions to the club:
Cihan, Muhammet, Broggi
Rothen, Geremi, Rajnock Sapara, Hürriyet
Adem, Kaan and Vassell came on as substitutes.
The match started with a brief spurt of energy from Ankaragücü, but quickly settled into the plodding doldrums that have too often typified our performance this season. Neither side looked particularly impressive in the first half. Although Bursaspor had a shot deflect off the post in the final seconds of stoppage time, both teams failed to generate serious scoring opportunities. The second half amounted to more of the same: a lackadaisical slog to the final whistle.
Bursaspor is a good team, deserving of their high position in the table. Their finesse on the ball highlighted the lack of cohesion and dearth of creativity amongst our players. Perhaps this is a product of so many new faces and the gaps in management, but it's very clear that Lemerre must take drastic measures to address our offensive difficulties if he hopes to keep Ankaragücü in the Super Lig.
- Connect Kanka
(I'll add Connect Kanka's photos in a tick - Oz Kanka) DONE