Greetings Kankas and Kankies.
Ankaragucu swept Sivas aside last night in Ankara with a sustained attacking performance throughout which secured their status as a Super League team for next season.
Despite being without three key players (Djedje, Faty and Pinto) who left the Club last week for financial reasons, it didn’t seem to affect the team as much as anticipated. It was a controlled performance from start to finish and a consolation goal by Sivas half way through the 2nd half didn’t have any bearing on the final outcome.
ANKARAGUCU 3 Sivasspor 1
Team – Korcan, Kitsiou, Kulusic, Pazdan, Cebrail, Moke, Canteros, Boyd, Ilhan, Sacko and Orgill
Substitutes – Moulin, Sedat and Sadev
Maniac Kanka Harun, Battle Damaged Kanka Damon and I met-up at the Sumer Cafe in Kizilay full of optimism, but I was wondering yesterday if we would end up like this photo from yesteryear ??!!
My quote last night pre-match was (with all due respect to Sivas) ............’if we cant’ beat Sivas we don’t deserve to be in the Super League !!’ Harun’s quote was more measured ............’I’ll settle for one point’ !!
Ankaragucu went straight into attack from the kick-off when Orgill was put through on the left channel, but with two Ankaragucu attackers free on the right he decided to shoot, but his shot was blocked for a corner.
Not long after that, Boyd was put through but he got tangled-up with defenders and the ball was cleared. Then we witnessed some great skill from Sacko on the right, but he couldn’t get his cross in due the close attention of defenders.
The break through came in the 23rd minute when Man of the Match, Sacko, picked up a pass just outside the box in the centre and sent in a left foot shot to the right corner with the goalkeeper helpless. Smiles all round and sighs of relief. I said prior to KO that to go in 1-0 up at HT would be imperative to give them the impetus in the 2nd half !!
Ilhan and Boyd had other ideas ! On the half hour mark a sweeping attack on the right when Ilhan chased the ball down to the touch line and played the cut-back expertly for the inrushing and unmarked Boyd to sweep the ball in for No2.
Approaching half time and Korcan had to be smart to cut-out a dangerous Sivas attack which could have proved costly.
On the half time whistle and Canteros had a free kick just outside the box but his shot was sent over.
Ankaragucu started the 2nd half as they had in the 1st half on full out attack. It was only 2 minutes old when Ilhan almost scored from a deft flick on the right at a difficult angle, but his attempt found the side netting.
However, 3 minutes later and Ankaragucu put the match to bed. It was a sweeping move which saw Boyd’s shot saved, but Canteros was in the right place to pick up the rebound from the save and send in a well controlled side-foot shot to the left with the goalkeeper rooted to the spot.
At this point, the cameraman zoomed in on our Coach, Mustafa Kaplan, who was shedding tears on the touchline. Tears of happiness yes, but probably also tears of relief that he would not be the man to take Ankaragucu back down to The Championship League !!!
Half way through the 2nd half and Sivas grabbed a consolation goal which was down to Ankaragucu’s defenders day-dreaming. A cross came in from the left to the far post where 2 attackers were lurking unmarked with the Ankaragucu defence oblivious to their presence. All credit to Braz who headed in with the unprotected Korcan flapping at air.
Ankaragucu didn’t allow that goal to alter the pattern of play. It could almost have been 4 when Moulin’s shot hit the post with the goalkeeper beaten. The rebound was picked up by Sacko who’s shot was miraculously saved and tipped over for a corner.
15 minutes to go and the referee made his one big mistake of the evening when he waved play on after Sacko was unceremoniously brought down inside the box. He really should have consulted his VAR for that incident !!!
10 minutes to go and Korcan saved a certain goal when he got down smartly to save in the centre.
Ankaragucu was running the clock down in the last few minutes but Orgill almost made it 4 when his shot went just past the post.
So, Ankaragucu travel to Izmir next weekend for the final match against Goztepe and can relax in the knowledge that Super League footie is preserved for next season. However, the result of that match will have a bearing on the relegation issue.
Akhisar and Erzurum look certain to go down, but it is still unclear if Goztepe or Bursa will join them. If Ankaragucu can beat Goztepe and Bursa can beat Malatya then Goztepe will go down, but if not, then it may be curtains for our brother team Bursa.
I guess lots of the Bursa Teksas Group will travel to Izmir to support Ankaragucu !!!
Well done Ankaragucu and let’s hope that the Management Team solve the present financial problems before the resumption of League action next season !!!
All the best from Eski Kanka Jim