Greetings Kankas and Kankies.
The Eskisehirspor (Ess-Ess) goalkeeper, Kayacan Erdogan, shut the gate firmly against everything that Ankaragucu could throw at him with some outstanding saves that won him my Man of The Match award ! However, he could do little about the breach in the 71st minute when he was left exposed by his defence who had supported him so well up until that point. One lapse in concentration was enough to seal the 3 points for Ankaragucu !
ANKARAGUCU 1 Eskisehirspor 0
The kankas met up at The Bira Park – Maniac Kanka Harun and Battle Damaged Kanka Damon, and then we made the hike along the GMK Bulvar, through the underground Maltepe Carsi, through the impressive new Ankara Railway Station and then to the Stadium. We met up with the remainder of the kankas there – Horseman Kanka Osman, Posh Kanka Ahmet and Vittoria Kanka Miguel.
The stadium atmosphere was in carnival mode and it was full in all the tribunes, except the away end which, of course, was empty !
An impressive giant flag in Maraton greeted the players as they entered to start the match.
Kayacan made the first of his string of saves in the 11th minute after fine work by Kenan and Umut to set up a golden opportunity for Enes whose goalbound shot was well saved and turned around the post for a corner (the first of many !).
16th minute and the customary Bursa song !
It was all Ankaragucu with sporadic breakaways by Ess-Ess, but the save of the match came 5 minutes before the break. Enes was brought down just outside the box on the left. Up stepped Erdem to send in ‘a curler’ to the top left hand corner of the goal and we were all up celebrating a great goal. Wrong !!! Kayacan made an acrobatic flying save to turn the ball round the post – absolutely incredible save !
One minute later and Altay was brought into the match to make his first save of the match, but it was a weak shot and easily saved.
Two minutes later and Kayacan made another great instinctive save when Umut crossed for Kenan who connected well, but his goalbound shot was saved with us all screaming for a goal !
Into time added on and there was a fracas between the 4th referee, one of the substitutes and Ismail Bey concerning a foul given against Ankaragucu. A few missiles were thrown by a few supporters in Sag Kapali, but it was calmed by the presence of Police and stewards. However, it could have turned nasty ! Here’s hoping the 4th official doesn’t report it to the TFF and give them another opportunity to punish us AGAIN !!
Just time for Kayacan to make another good save before the half time whistle.
Into the 2nd half and Ankaragucu again took the game to Ess-Ess and 5 minutes in it was almost on own-goal when and Ess-Ess defender made a panic clearance which went narrowly past the post for a corner.
8 minutes later a sweeping move by Ankaragucu ended with a goalbound shot by our great kaptan Erdem being saved by that man again for a corner.
It was all Ankaragucu, but Ess-Ess still looked dangerous on the break, but the Ankaragucu defence were able to deal with everything that came their way.
Then in the 64th minute, another one of Ismail Bey’s strange decisions when Kehinde replaced the hard working and effective Enes. I honestly don’t know how his brain works !!! There was Parlak still on the pitch who had been anonymous for most of the match. His positioning when running off the ball is hopeless and he is not the partner for Umut to feed off. I shake my head in disbelief. Parlak is a bench warmer !!!
Rant over, and back to the match ! In the 66th minute Kenan was put through with a great pass, but his fierce shot went just past the post.
5 minutes later and the breakthrough came at last. From a corner on the left, the ball wasn’t attacked by the defenders and Yusuf was on hand to head in with Kayacan exposed and unprotected. Cue ...... wild scenes of celebration for all the tribunes and by the players at the Gecikondu end and took a few minutes for the referee to restart the match.
Into the last 15 minutes and Ankaragucu was soaking up the pressure now as Ess-Ess searched for an equaliser. However, Altay was only called upon once more to save from another weak shot.
So, to the final whistle and sighs of relief all round as Ankaragucu took advantage of Rize and Bolu both dropping points.
Ess-Ess was a difficult nut to crack, thanks to the exploits of Kayacan, but the crucial goal was found and that’s the bottom line !
Now the pressure is back on Rize as Ankaragucu move to within one point of them at the top of the league.
Next up is an away match to 3rd bottom of the league, Denizli on 1 April (international footie next weekend). On the other hand, Rize has a very difficult away match against Istan....spit....bulspor !
Haydi Ankaragucu – let’s do this, and return to our God given rightful position in the Super League !!!
All the best from Eski Kanka Jim