Sunday, November 11, 2018

THE GENCLERBIRLIGI EXPRESS FINALLY DERAILS !




Greetings Kankas and Kankies.

The Ankaragucu Kankas returned to The Alerta Pub to watch our first Genclerbirligi match of the season.   Having just watched Ankaragucu go down 2-0 to Konyaspor in The Sumer Cafe, we were in need of an uplifting result to put the smiles back on our ugly mugs !    Unfortunately, we were to be disappointed as Gencler contrived to lose their first league match of the season.

Note for Oz Kanka Chris down-under in Ozland ............... sorry to put the kiss of death on your team !!!

Balikesir     3                    GENCLERBIRLIGI       1

Gencler started brightly enough and almost scored after 15 minutes, but the swerving goalbound shot from the Gencler No8 was brilliantly saved in the top corner.

It was not all Gencler with Balikesir also in attacking mode, and they opened the scoring with a breakaway attack on the left after 25 minutes.  The Gencler defence was all at sea as two cut-backs inside the box allowed the Balikesir attacker to tap-in.

They almost scored a second 3 minutes later but a good save from the Gencler goalkeeper deflected the ball for a corner.

Almost on the half time whistle and the Gencler No77 should have equalised, but he dragged his shot across the goal area and out.

The Kankas with Orcan, The Alerta Owner and renowned Gencler fanatic, at half time and still hoping for a Gencler victory !

Gencler came out for the 2nd half in full-on attacking mode and we felt the equaliser was coming, and it did, but not as we expected.

The Gencler No10 was brought down in the box and the referee pointed to the penalty spot.   Up stepped Nobre who sent his effort to the right with the goalkeeper diving to the left.

Instead of Gencler moving up a gear in search of the winner, it was Balikesir taking the game to Gencler.

With only 3 minutes to go it was looking like a share of the spoils, especially after the Gencler goalkeeper made an incrediblc save to push the ball around the post for a corner to save a certain goal.   Then, from that corner, a header from the near post was sent to the back post for another header, but the goalkeeper had it covered, or so we thought.   However, he somehow fumbled the ball and allowed it to trickle over the line !

What a bummer !

Into time added-on and the Balikesir goalkeeper sent his clearance over the half way line where a Balikesir attacker latched onto it with the Gencler defenders trailing in his wake.   With only the goalkeeper to beat, he had no trouble picking his spot and sending the home fans delirious.

My similar quote on the Ankaragucu v Konya report applies to Gencler ......... ie, ‘A bad day at the office’ !

All credit to Balikesir though.   They didn’t appear over-awed by the visit of the league leaders and refused to give up.

On a happy note, at least Bolu lost too, when Denizli beat them 2-1 in Bolu.   After a miserable two seasons fighting relegation, Denizli seem to have re-discovered winning ways, and they look to be in ominous form.

Time for Gencler to re-group and get the express train back on the tracks !!!

All the best from Eski Kanka Jim

Saturday, November 10, 2018

Konyaspor 2-0 Ankaragücü match report!



Ankaragücü were brought back down to earth today after a poor performance and 2-0 defeat at Konyaspor. An own goal from Ricardo Faty and a strike from Moryke Fofana gave Konyaspor the deserved 3 points as Ankaragucu only turned up in the second half.

Team - Korcan, Erdem, Kone, Yalcin, Tiago, Faty, Djedje, Kenan, Bifouma, Putsila, El Kabir
Subs - Altay, Mahmut, Mehmet, Kehinde, Cerci, Mokhtar, Kaan, Moulin, Sedat, Erdem Sen

Kubilay failed a late fitness test as he hasn’t fully recovered from the knock he picked up last week against Kayserispor which meant a start for Anton Putsila. We can’t only blame Putsila but that’s both games he has started the team has failed to score and Kubilay was a big loss.

It was Konyaspor who started the brighter and almost took the lead early on. Kenan tried to be too clever in his own half and was dispossessed, the ball found its was to Adis Jahovic who saw his 30 yard effort come back off the bar.

Konyaspor had another couple of chances in the first 20 minutes through Milosevic and Yatabare but neither could finish their chance.

Adis Jahovic was at the centre of all Konyaspor moves and twice set up Mustapha Yatabare who blasted well over on both occasions. Just before half time Konyaspor had another couple of chances. Firstly a great team move ended up with a brilliant last ditch challenge from a Erdem who cleared a clear goal. Then on the stroke of half time Yatabare brilliantly set up Milosevic who somehow shot over the bar from 5 yards.

Half Time 

Ankaragücü were lucky to head into half time level but came out for the second half much brighter. El Kabir should have had a penalty a minute into the second half but the referee didn’t even consult with VAR. Just as El Kabir went to shoot, Diagne kicker him on the back of the leg and made no contact with the ball, a disgraceful decision by the referee.

A couple of minutes later nice play from Bifouma to set up El Kabir in the box, but the Moroccan blasted his shot over the bar.

It was all Ankaragücü at this point and El Kabir set up Kenan who shot from distance but his shot was easily saved by Serkan. A minute later and it was Konyaspor who had the next chance. Jahovic was played through on goal but tried to be to fancy and back heeled the ball instead of shooting when he had a clear chance.

Then came the opening goal, a corner into the box from Konyaspor was headed into his own goal from Ricardo Faty to give Konya the lead.

Both teams had half chances before the 2nd goal went in with El Kabir and Fofana both seeing their efforts go over the bar. The 2nd goal came when Milosevic broke though on goal unchallenged and played a beautiful pass in for Fofana who calmly slotted the ball past Korcan to make it 2-0.

Ankaragücü had a chance straight away to pull one back but Cerci shot straight at Serkan when through on goal.

Konyaspor 2-0 winners and deserved the 3 points although Ankaragücü will be disappointed with the decision not to be awarded a penalty at 0-0. Next up for Ankaragücü is a home match with Besiktas after the international break!

Wednesday, November 07, 2018

Konyaspor vs Ankaragucu match preview!



Its almost 6 years since that famous match between Ankaragucu and Konyaspor that erupted into a pitch invasion and massive brawl resulting in a 12 match stadium ban for Ankaragucu. The match at 19 Mayis on a cold December day made headlines all across Turkey and Europe as the scenes showcased the ugly side of Turkish football.

Ankaragucu fans had already seen their club destroyed by certain individuals off the pitch, all it took was some insulting chanting from Konya fans for Gecekondu to break down the fences and run onto the pitch as they tried to get into the Konya end. Konya were awarded a 3-0 win that day and followed it up with a 1-0 win at home later that season as Ankaragucu fans were banned from travelling to the match.

This is the first time the two sides have met since that season and one that was met with anticipation when the fixtures were announced in the Summer. Unfortunately for Ankaragucu, the fans have been banned from travelling to Konya by their Mayor, so the team will have to go out into battle on their own against the enemy.

The Ankaragucu fans can be full of confidence that the team can go there and bring back the 3 points with the form that they are currently on. Another brilliant performance from the team last weekend as they beat Kayserispor 3-1 and move up to 5th in the table.

Having supported Ankaragucu for the last 9 years i would say last weekends performance is up there with the best i have saw from an Ankaragucu team. The 4-2 wins over Fenerbahce and Galatasaray the last time we were in the Super Lig, the 3-0 win over Galatasaray and the 3-1 win at Fenerbahce 2 weeks ago are all contenders. The Kayserispor match though was dominant, and every player that was on the pitch were outstanding and contenders for a man of the match performance.

Its not a coincidence that since the team have been paid and key players have returned from injury has saw them go up another level. There is quality all over the pitch, but when you add the work rate on top of that its the key ingredients needed to build a good team.

Both Antalyaspor and Ankaragucu are having similar starts to the season and there are a lot of similarities between the two sides. Antalyaspor have got rid of all the over paid foreign signings such as Samir Nasri, Johan Djourou, Jeremey Menez and Sandro and have instead went with players who are actually at the club to play football and take the club forward instead of an end of career retirement home.

The work that Ismail Kartal is putting in behind the scenes is paying off and he spoke in his last interview of wanting his team to play football. Ankaragucu fans are delighted not just with the results, but also the performances.

He has Djedje and Faty in the middle of the park doing all the dirty work, but both of them also contribute in the attacking play too. This allows El Kabir, Kubilay and Bifouma to all do their work in the final third.

Special mention needs to go to Kenan Ozer, he has started the last couple of games and again puts in a lot of work, tracking back helping his midfield and defence. It looked at one point that his Super Lig dream was over before dropping down the Lig 1 with Ankaragucu where he became a key player. Kenan has found it hard this season to break into the starting line up, but he has worked hard, remained patient and is now being rewarded for that.

Konyaspor are currently 10th in the league but its always a difficult place to travel to with their volatile fanbase. They have some dangerous players in attack such as Mustapha Yatabare and Adis Jahovic, but Omer Ali Sahiner is out suspended due to being sent off in their last game with Sivasspor.

This is  a match that Ankaragucu can win if they play at the same tempo and level as they have been. A win at Konya will see the team full of confidence going into the big one with Besiktas at home the following game.

Tuesday, November 06, 2018

THE GENCLERBIRLIGI EXPRESS REFUSES TO STOP !




Greetings Kankas and Kankies.

It’s an amazing ride for Genclerbirligi and surely a Club record to go 11 league matches undefeated ?!

GENCLERBIRLIGI    1           Giresun      0

Again, I don’t have any details of last night’s match except to say that Ahmet Ilhan scored the only goal of the match in the first half.

The win keeps Gencler 5 points ahead of Bolu who also won away at bottom Club Karabuk.

Also, the chasing pack of Denizli, Gazisehir, Adana Demir and Umraniye all won, so a fortuitous win for Gencler.

Next Saturday KO 4pm Gencler will be away at Balikesir who are in the relegation zone, but I’m sure Coach, Erkan Sozeri, will not under-estimate them.

Haydi Gencler !

All tbe best from Eski Kanka Jim

Monday, November 05, 2018

ANKARAGUCU ...... AND FIVE IS THE NUMBER !!!!!




Greetings Kankas and Kankies.

Why FIVE ?     Ankaragucu move up into 5th place in the League which is much more than we could have expected at the beginning of the season.

The team is firing on all cylinders and showing consistent performances now.   Let’s hope this can be maintained for the difficult matches to come.

ANKARAGUCU     3        Kayserispor     1

Team – Korcan, Erdem, Kone, Yalcin, Pinto, Faty, Djedje, Kenan, El-Kabir, Bifouma and  

Substitutes used – Ilhan, Cerci and Mokhtar

Battle Damaged Kanka Damon and I met up at The Anasson Bar and were later joined by Maniac Kanka Harun and Posh Kanka Ahmet.

However, before the match started, and as the players emerged from the tunnel, I noticed that olde boy Umut Bulut was wearing the captain’s armband.    I should also mention that he received a hero’s welcome from the Ankaragucu supporters.

Umut was always one of my favourite players and it was a sad loss when he left us for Trabzon.    I was also thinking that I hoped he would have a quiet day back in Ankara and be well policed by Yalcin.    Happily, that’s exactly what happened !!

There was little to say about the match at first, but after 14 minutes the match sparked into life.   Some trickery from Bifouma on the left wing left defenders in his wake – he crossed to the far post where El-Kabir met the ball and fired in a full volley to the top of the far post with the goalkeeper totally mesmerized.    A goal worthy of consideration as Goal of the Season !



A fantastic start for Ankaragucu and Djedje almost made it two 8 minutes later but his shot drifted wide.

However, we only had to wait a further 5 minutes for the 2nd goal.   A corner on the left was sent into the near post and Faty connected with a glancing header to deceive everyone and send us all up and high-fiving !

Kayseri was stunned and responded positively, but thanks to a double defensive block by Erdem and a goalbound save by Korcan, Ankaragucu’s lead remained intact.

Approaching half time and Ankaragucu withstood the Kayseri surge.   El-Kabir had two chances to increase the lead but one effort was straight at Muammer in goal and the other high and over.   Faty also had a great swerving shot from outside the box saved brilliantly by Muammer when he deflected the ball onto the bar, but it bounced back into play and he recovered the ball.

One last breakaway by Kayseri before the break almost caught out the Ankaragucu defence when Umut just failed to connect with a cross from the left.

Into the 2nd half and Kubilay had a golden opportunity when a cross came in from Bifouma on the left.   However, although not under any pressure, he headed weakly over.

10 minutes gone in the 2nd half and Faty made an uncharacteristic error when he needlessly handled the ball in the penalty area.   He was in a one-on-one challenge with an attacker but not in the danger area and the referee decided it was hand to ball.    I have a suspicion that the linesman, who was closest to the incident, whispered ......’penalty’ ....... to the referee through his earphones.   In my opinion it seemed like ball to hand with both players trying to win the ball.

Anyway, up stepped Chery to send his shot to the centre of the goal with Korcan diving to his left.   This could have sparked a Kayseri revival, but ........ it didn’t !

7 minutes later the match was put out of Kayseri’s reach with a classic striker’s goal from Kubilay.   Bifouma went on one of his dangerous runs down the left and then crossed into the box where Kubilay was ideally positioned to bullet in a header beyond Muammer’s reach.   Sighs of relief all round !

Unfortunately, Kubilay limped off 10 minutes later to be replaced by Ilhan.   Then shortly after that Kana was shown a 2nd yellow for barging into the back of Kenan and Kayseri were down to 10 men for the last 15 minutes.

It didn’t have a serious impact on the match with Ankaragucu stroking the ball around to shouts of ........ olay, olay, olay !

Cerci and Mokhtar came on late to replace Kenan and Bifouma, but it was Erdem still foraging down the right and looking for the 4th goal when the final whistle was blown !



So, another excellent win for Ankaragucu which bodes well for the future.   The team are operating as ‘at team’ and playing some fast attacking football.   Having said that, it is therefore difficult to nominate my Man of the Match, but if I’m pressed then it has to be El-Kabir for his stunning volley to open the scoring.

Another opportunity next Saturday KO 1.30pm in Konya to win another 3 points, and if Galata....spit....saray, Antalya or Kasimpasa falter, it could propel Ankaragucu into the Top 4.

Watching this match in The Anasson Bar.

Bring it on !!!

All the best from Eski Kanka Jim

Friday, November 02, 2018

Ankaragucu vs Kayserispor match preview!



Ankaragucu host Kayserispor on Sunday afternoon at Yenikent stadium looking to make it 3 wins on a row in the Turkish Super Lig and move into the top 5. That we are even mentioning Ankaragucu being in the top half of the table is a true credit to manager Ismail Kartal who has the smallest budget in the Super Lig and half of the squad played for the club in Lig 1 last season.

After a stunning 3-1 victory at Fenerbahce last weekend, Ankaragucu will be hoping to maintain that form but know they face a different kind of test this weekend. Both sides won in the Turkish Cup during the week, Ankaragucu winning 1-0 at home against Erbaaspor, while Kayserispor thumped Pazarspor 6-1.

Kayserispor sit 12th in the table but these are the type of games that Ankaragucu have struggled against in the past such as the Antalyaspor match. The visitors have plenty of quality in their side such as Bernard Mensah, Tjaronn Chery, Deniz Turuc, Bilal Basacikoglu and former Ankaragucu favourite Umut Bulut who is their main goalscoring threat. Rajko Rotman is the steel in the middle of the park who breaks up play and allows the others to break forward.

Similar to Ankaragucu, Kayserispor have struggled at times to find the back of the net this season having scored only 9 goals in 10 games. A good 2-0 win against Sivasspor last weekend will give them confidence that they can come to the Capital and cause an upset.

Ismail Kartal will likely go with the same team that won last weekend at Fenerbahce. Youness Mokhtar and Alessio Cerci both played midweek and will likely take their place on the bench. Kubilay gives the team a new dimension up front with his size and physical presence. With creative players such as El Kabir, Thievy Bifouma and Kenan Ozer behind him he will have plenty of support in attack. Ricardo Faty and Djedje will be the two workers in midfield that allow the others to go and attack.

It will be an emotional return to Ankara for former forward Darius Vassell who is taking in the game and will be a guest of the club. Despite having an unsettled time a the club due to issues off field with the former management, he still holds the club close to his heart and the feeling is mutual with the fans. We hope that he enjoys his stay in Ankara and the team gives him 3 points on his return.