Friday, June 11, 2021

Ankaragucu transfer update!


Ankaragucu have wasted no time in preparing for the coming season with agreements for 5 new players according to various sources. With more than 20 players departing the club, the squad this season will have a whole new look.

If reports are to be believed and Ankaragucu have made agreements with the 5 players, they have started their recruitment by signing players from Lig 1 who have experience playing in lower leagues. This for me isn't a bad idea if you mix in some youth products and better quality from abroad. 

One of the players said to have agreed a move to the club is centre back, Yusuf Abdioglu who previously played for Ankaragucu 3 years ago in Lig 1 and helped the club to promotion. I wasn't a fan of him especially after a horror showing against Altinordu. But he has played well with Hatayspor over the last 2 seasons and helped them win promotion to the Super Lig too.

His team mate Akin Alkan is also set to have agreed to join. The 31 year old Goalkeeper is available on a free transfer and will be a replacement for Korcan and Freidrich.

Umar Basit the 21 year old Striker from Ankaraspor as we mentioned previously and Cem Ekinci along with Tuzlaspor defender Yasin Gureler are the other 3 who are said to have agreed moves. We will await confirmation from Ankaragucu. 

Thursday, June 10, 2021

Faruk Koca elected as Ankaragucu president!


Faruk Koca comfortably won the elections to become next Ankaragucu president at this afternoons congress. Metin Akyuz with the support of Mehmet Yiginer who presented the congress put up a late fight but in the end Koca won by 700 votes.

A couple of notable statements from Koca included him announcing he will pay off the clubs debts in the next 12 months and the club wont owe anyone a single penny. He also stated he sold all his family apartments to help pay to lift the transfer ban. Finally the team could be set to move back to the luxury training complex Saray Spor which will play a big part in helping attract new players sign for the club.

Faruk Koca has certainly made some bold statements, lets now see if he can fulfill them as he made a few last season and never lived up to them. The good news is that a few sources have claimed that the management team he has put together is very impressive. Time will tell. 

Ankaragucu - News Roundup!


Today is marks another important day for Ankaragucu as the clubs delegates will vote for the clubs next president. For the first time in 9 years there are 2 candidates who will go head to head for control of the Capital club. 

Fatih Mert announced his decision to step down as President at the end of the season paving the way for Faruk Koca to take full control. Metin Akyuz is the other candidate who was part of the Mehmet Yiginer regime but it looks doubtful that he will come out on top.

Whoever the successful candidate is, we can only hope that they bring stability and organisation back to the club. Torgeir Borven spoke out in a Norwegian newspaper earlier in the week about his wish to leave Ankaragucu. He stated his unhappiness about how unorganised things are and doesn't want to play in Lig 1. 

Its basics like paying players salaries, hiring a Sporting Director, investing in the youth academy and scouting that will change the long term future of Ankaragucu. If the new President doesn't address these issues then Ankaragucu will continue to mount up debt and fall down the leagues. 

On the transfer front, Ankaragucu are reported to have agreed a move for Ankaraspor forward Umar Basit who is a powerful and fast 21 year old Ghanaian. They are also said to have agreed a 500,000 TL move for Cem Ekinci who scored 11 goals for Keciorengucu last season in Lig 1. The 31 year old German has spent most of his career in the lower leagues. 

Thiago Pinto is attracting interest from Altay who have just been promoted to the Super Lig and Famlicao back in Portugal. Saba Lobjanidze has signed a 3 year deal with Hatayspor while Paintsil, Badji and Diousse go back to their parent clubs. 

Ante Kulusic, Michal Pazdan, Korcan Celikay, Emre Gural, Atilla Turan, Ricardo Freidrich, and Furkan Beklevic are all out of contract and will move on to new clubs. 

Alper Potuk and Stelios Kitsiou are likely to leave the club with neither wanting to play in Lig 1 and Hikmet Karaman is unlikely to return as manager with his contract expiring last month. 

We will have a further update later today on the election results .

Monday, May 17, 2021

Ankaragucu players terminate their contracts!


The familiar story of players not being paid their salary sadly returns to Ankaragucu as Zvonimir Sarlija becomes the first player to terminate his contract. Its believed 4-5 other players have also taken the decision as salary's haven't been paid for 5 months. 

Sarlija is reported to have been paid only 20K of his 360K Salary and is now free to sign with other clubs with Ankaragucu still having to pay his outstanding salary. Sarlija signed for the club in the summer for 300K and is one of very few players who the club could have commanded a fee. Unfortunately as so often the case, the club will now receive nothing and Sarlija becomes a very expensive signing for a club who was relegated. 

The other players who refused to play in the weekends game are unnamed at this stage but believed to be both Turkish and Foreign. Looking at the team line up Endri, Alper, and Ibrahim could be among those players. 

Hikmet Karaman took a pop at an incident that happened 5 weeks ago but wouldn't say what the said incident was, he believes this was the reason the club were relegated. Its also believed he has had a fall out with Thiago Pinto as he kept him on the bench against Alanya despite having no recognised left back to chose. 

Karaman himself has come in for criticism for taking so long to play Man of the Match Mert Topuz and insisting on Freidrich and Korcan who both continued to perform badly all season. He also failed to play any other youth players at the weekend and instead gave opportunities to failures such as Assane, Orkan, Saba, Sahverdi who have no futures with the club. 

The clubs elections will take place later this month as Fatih Mert has stepped down and it looks like Faruk Koca will be a candidate and potentially Mehmet Yiginer. 

Neither candidate is good new for Ankaragucu. I have no doubt both have the right intentions, but they have proven they dont know how to run a football club. 

Emre Gural has also announced on his Instagram that he has left the club as his contract wont be renewed. 

Sunday, May 16, 2021




Greetings Kankas and Kankies.


A trip to Trabzon was a bridge too far for Gencler yesterday as they were comprehensively outplayed and so return to The Championship League next season.


Having said that, there can be no doubting Gencler’s fighting spirit, but their undoing occurred in January, February and into March when they went 11 matches without winning and dropped into the relegation zone.


Trabzon dominated the match yesterday and Gencler can thank Nordfeldt for an outstanding display between the sticks to keep the score line respectable.


Trabzonspor             2                       GENCLERBIRLIGI              1


Team – Nordfeldt, Polomat, Arda, Mert, Johansson, Toure, Soner, Yilmaz, Ayite, Berisbek and Stancu


Substitutes – Lima, Mugni and Ilker


It was all Trabzon in the 1st half and Trabzon almost took the lead after 15 minutes when Nwakaeme hit the post from a shot just outside the box.       2 minutes later and the woodwork saved Gencler again when a shot came in and hit the crossbar.


The Trabzon barrage continued and Nordfeldt saved a goal bound shot by Nwakaeme and then a point blank shot inside the 6 yard box.


However, the break through arrived just before the half time whistle when a mistimed tackle by Arda allowed Ekuban through and he sent his shot inside the left post with Nordfeldt unable to reach it.


Gencler had one shot on target in the 1st half when Ayite’s shot was saved by Ugurcan.


Into the 2nd half and Trabzon was stunned after only 5 minutes when Ayite avoided 2 tackles and sent his fierce shot from just inside the box on the right into the net with Ugurcan well beaten.


Trabzon continued to dictate play and Nordfeldt made 2 crucial saves to frustrate them.    Then Trabzon thought they had restored their lead in the 70th minute but it was correctly ruled offside.


Trabzon continued to press forward and 5 minutes later Nordfeldt to the rescue again to save another goal bound shot.


Into the last 10 minutes and was looking increasingly like a 1-1 stalemate, and then Trabzon scored in the 83rd minute, but again it was correctly ruled out after the referee had consulted VAR and confirmed that Nwakaeme had fouled Arda before the final shot.


However, the winning goal arrived 3 minutes later when Afobe was played through with only Nordfeldt to beat and he made no mistake.    Claims were made for offside, but the replay clearly showed that Polomat had played Afobe onside.


Gencler did have a chance to score in the 75th minute when a shot from Stancu just outside the box hit the top of the crossbar and went out of play.


So, Gencler can have no complaints with the outcome, but as I have said many times here this season, there can be no criticism of their fighting spirit.       They have a strong defence but they will perhaps be looking at strengthening their midfield for next season.


As we know from experience, there are no easy matches in The Championship League and it is very difficult to bounce straight back up.


On the upside, at least there will be the Ankara Derby to look forward to next season with Ankaragucu also relegated   !!


As always, watch this space when hostilities resume   !!


All the best from Eski Kanka Jim




Greetings Kankas and Kankies.


An unsurprising end to Ankaragucu’s Super League status yesterday   !      With their two midfield generals missing (Alper and Endri) and striker Borven still injured, there was no danger of Ankaragucu staging a fiery exit, although Badji did have a few chances which were scorned.


The match was dictated by a slick Alanya side and Ankaragucu have Man of the Match, Mert Topuz, to thank for keeping the score line respectable, especially in the 2nd half when it was all one way traffic   !!


ANKARAGUCU              0                     Alanyaspor             1


Team – Mert Topuz, Atakan, Kulusic, Pazdan, Erdi, Ali Kaan, Diousse, Saba, Cetin, Paintsil and Badj


Substitutes – Alperen, Geraldo, Lukasik, Orkan and Embiya


Alanya made it quite clear from the start that they were here to attack and gave Ankaragucu two scares in the opening 10 minutes when they carved open the Ankaragucu defence, but their final efforts were off target.


However,  they punished terrible defending in the 23rd minute when Davidson headed in from a right wing cross.    Mert made his only mistake of the match by committing himself for the cross too early and he was nowhere near it.    As for the 4 defenders who were defending the cross, errrrrrrmm ............. posted absent asleep   !!!!


10 minutes later and it was almost 2-0 when Erdi passed to an Alanya attacker who said ......thank you very much he passed to a colleague.     But, thankfully Mert was able to save the shot.


Badji had two chances in the 1st half.    Some nice footwork by him to avoid 2 tackles before his shot was blocked, and again he made space for a shot, but it was weak and easily saved.


As I said earlier, it was all one way traffic in the 2nd half and Mert Topuz was immense in saving goal bound shots – 6 times he pulled off great saves to thwart the Alanya forwards.    He will probably be 1st choice goalkeeper next season in my opinion !!


Having said it was all one way traffic, Ankaragucu must shoulder some of the blame when they kept giving possession away with panic passing and hoofing long balls out of defence which were swallowed up by the Alanya midfield and another attack mounted.


Badji did have another chance to equalise near the end but his shot just inside the box was saved.


So, where does Ankaragucu go from here ???     As Nadeem mentioned in his summary (one post back) there will be lots of players packing their bags for pastures new and finding a Club which pays a salary on a regular basis   !!!     


As we know from a few years ago, life in the Championship League isn’t easy and lots of teams will relish the chance to come to The Eryaman Stadium to take the scalp of Ankaragucu  !!


Club elections are due shortly, so we must wait and see what transpires, and see if it will it affect Ankaragucu in a positive or negative way.


As always, watch this space for details and Ankaragucu news throughout the summer months.


All the best from Eski Kanka Jim

Friday, May 14, 2021

Ankaragucu 2020/21 Season Summary!


Its been a hugely disappointing season for Ankaragucu as they have been relegated twice in the last 2 seasons. Last season the club were fortunate to keep their place in the Super Lig due to the Covid outbreak, but they have paid the price this season for failing to learn from previous mistakes. 

We will now take a look  at the performances of the Management team, Staff and Squad from this season while also looking at who still has a future at the club. 

Faruk Koca - We start at the very top and Faruk Koca is the person who will take most of the responsibility. Although Fatih Mert is seen as the President of Ankaragucu, it is Faruk Koca who makes most of the decisions in the background. Although I do believe he has the best interest of the club at heart and wants to see a successful Ankaragucu, Faruk has failed to address all the areas which make a successful football club. Apart from Hikmet Karaman, every managerial appointment has been a failure, he has failed to appoint an experienced Sporting Director or Scouting team and has been interfering too much in team decisions. If Faruk wants to be the main decision maker he needs to step up and take responsibility instead of hiding behind Fatih Mert. However i dont not believe Faruk is the right person to take Ankaragucu forward as he has proved he doesnt know how to run the club. 

Fatih Mert - He will be as disappointed as any Ankaragucu fan with how things have turned out under his leadership. He has made mistakes and he will be the first to admit that. With no experience running a football previously it was a huge task to take on the responsibility of a club like Ankaragucu. Fatih Mert reluctantly took over as president almost 2 years ago and in that time has saw the club relegated twice. The difficulty for Fatih Mert is that he wasn't allowed to make all the decisions he wanted to as Faruk Koca was making them in the background. Who knows how successful his leadership would have been if he could make all his own decisions, we will never know but it looks likely he will step down from his position later this month. 

Transfer Committee - The club have signed 60 players since returning to the Super Lig nearly 3 years ago. Of those 60 signings most of the successful ones were under the Yiginer leadership such as Tyler Boyd, Stelios Kitsiou, Thiago Pinto, Michal Pazdan and Stelios Kitsiou. This season you are looking at Borven, Endri, Alper, Ibrahim and Atakan as the only signings you can give pass marks too. We are talking 10 players from 60 as the success rate which is unacceptable for any club. We are also looking at only Endri and Atakan as players we can potentially make profit as Borven and Alper will likely terminate their contract due to unpaid wages. Ankaragucu cant continue with this type of transfer policy if they want to move forward and return to the Super Lig. 

Youth Academy - The only positive from this season is the work of Cengiz Paca and Levant Kale in the youth team. The team has some good young players such as Berke Gurbuz, Kaan Cinkaya, Yusuf Eren Goktas, Arif Emre Eren, Hakan Ozturk and Sirozhiddin Astanakulov who all have potential to break into the first team in the future. The club needs to start giving more opportunities to some of these youngsters and build for the future. The Ankaragucu Youth Academy is the heartbeat of the club. 

Ricardo Freidrich - Ricardo had a good start to his Ankaragucu career last season but has failed to find that same consistent form this season. He has been in and out of the team due to injury and poor performances. He is one of the most likeable players in the team and has a great positive attitude, but he isn't good enough to play in the Super Lig and Ankaragucu should move on and find a young Goalkeeper from Turkey with better quality. 

Korcan Celikay - Also struggled with consistency with some good performances when he came back into the team, which were followed up with poor performances in important matches. Korcan has been a good signing for the club and played his part in the club winning 2 back to back promotions, but he needs to be moved on and the club should focus on bringing through younger Goalkeepers either from the academy or lower leagues. 

Zvonimir Sarlija - One of the most frustrating players in the team. Zvonimir when he just concentrates on defending and focuses on the game is a good player. But too many inconsistent performances and his constant diving and play acting is not something you expect to see in a defender. If Hikmet Karaman stays as manager and Zvonimir can work on that side of his game he could be an important player in helping the club return to the Super Lig, but its whether he will want to play in Lig 1 that also needs to be taken into consideration. 

Erdi Dikmen - Wasn't ready to play Super Lig football. The 24 year old is still very raw and makes too many mistakes. Needs an experienced defender to play beside him and a consistent partner too. To often the centre back pairing was changed during the season and Erdi felt the pressure. Lig 1 might be his level and he still has an opportunity to have a career with the club but he needs to work on his positional sense and concentration. 

Michal Pazdan - Disappointing season for Michal who was a consistent performer for Ankaragucu previously. Struggled when he came back into the team after injury and the sending off on his return effectively ended his Ankaragucu career. One of the highest earners in the team Pazdan will move on in the summer and likely be owed a lot of money by the club. 

Alperen Babacan - Signed in January by the club from Lig 1 Akhisar where he was deemed not good enough. Strange signing by Ankaragucu as he has only been involved in 1 substitute appearance. Clearly not good enough to play for the club. 

Ante Kulusic - Returned to the starting line up in the second half of the season and the teams performances and defence improved. A leader on the pitch but at 34 we have seen the best of Ante and his performances towards the end of the season were inconsistent. Another who will likely be moved on in the summer. 

Atilla Turan - Works hard but his crossing and passing are woeful and defensively suspect too. Ankaragucu should look at the youth team for the back up left back position as Atilla has had plenty of opportunities and failed to take them. 

Thiago Pinto - Has been a good servant for the club and plays a big part in the teams attacking play with assists and crosses into the box. Not the strongest defensively and has had a lot of issues this season with his fitness which has saw him in and out the team and failing to complete 90 minutes. Its time for Thiago and Ankaragucu to part ways as its unlikely they will be able to afford the salary of a player coming to the later part of his career. 

Stelios Kitsiou - Had an injury which kept him out for a month. When he returned it took him a while to reach the high standards that he usually delivers. Once he was fully fit Kitsou was the best player in the team. Unfortunately the last couple of key games in the season he made a couple of errors which is unlike him. Kitsiou is a player i would like to keep but he will likely be snapped up by another Super Lig team.

Idriz Voca - Failed to live up to the expectations and largely goes missing in games when he is given an opportunity. The club could look to keep him and see if Lig 1 is more his level. Has potential on the ball but needs be stronger and more involved in the game if he wants to succeed at the club.

Atakan Cankaya - Has played in so many different positions for the club with Centre back the position he was most successful. The club and player see him more as a midfielder though and he has attracted interest from Fenerbahce who want to sign him in the Summer. Needs to work on his passing and game management if he is to be successful at Super Lig level. Has a great attitude and commitment but we never seen the best of him due to an injury he picked up.

Assane Diousse - Was seen as a bit of a coup when Ankaragucu signed him in the Summer but has failed to live up to those expectations. Fitness played a part in his inconsistent performances as he does have ability especially when it comes to long passing. But simple things like a short pass or final ball let him down as did his work rate and reading of the game. Will return to St Etienne in Summer. 

Daniel Lukasik - Didn't reach the heights of last season and another who struggled with consistency due to injuries. Daniel has shown his love for the club in the past and could be an important player for the club next season with his experience and if he can get back to full fitness. 

Ali Kaan - Signed from Akhisar in the Summer and came with a good reputation but has struggled to break into the team and will likely be part of the squad for next season. If he stays it could be a big opportunity for him to get more game time and develop.

Ibrahim Akdag - Became a big player for the club since his move in January with his work rate and attitude. Was part of the midfield trio with Endri and Alper. He did all the dirty work and defensive side of the game that allowed Alper and Endri to go forward and create. Hopefully he will remain at the club for next season. 

Sahverdi Cetin - Big things were expected when Ankaragucu were said to have beaten Besiktas to his signing in the summer. Struggled to make any impact and looked slow and unfit in any games he did play. Technically he has the ability to be a good player, but needs to improve on his stamina and work rate if he wants to make it. It will be interesting to see if he stays at the club for next season. 

Ender Aygoren - Came into the team towards the end of last year and had a few good performances before being injured. Another who could see more time next season depending on the clubs financial situation. 

Endri Cekici - One of the better players this season with his work rate and ability with the ball. Needs to add more goals to his game and be more ruthless with his finishing. Gets into good positions and had a lot of chances but his finishing was poor. If he can work on that side of his game he will be a very good player for the club and will likely attract interest from other clubs. 

Alper Potuk - First half of the season looked unfit and uninterested under Fuat Capa and Mustafa Dalci. Was then suspended by the club and his Ankaragucu career looked over. When Hikmet Karaman took over he gave Alper another opportunity and he was the best player in the team showing why he is regarded so highly in Turkish Football. Had his problems with injury which along with his attitude is the only thing stopping him playing at the highest level. If he can keep a positive attitude like he did in the second half of the season he will be back playing in the Super Lig. Its unlikey Alper will want to play in Lig 1 next season. 

Joseph Paintsil - Has the talent and scored 11 goals in a poor Ankaragucu team. His attitude and temperament let him down though and its something he will need to work on if he is to play at a higher level in his career. Works hard but doesn't make the best decision and can be very greedy. His overall numbers in goals and assists will improve if he works on this. Will return to Belgium after his loan in the summer. 

Saba Lobjanidze - If he took just half of the opportunities that came his way this season, Ankaragucu would still be in the Super Lig. Scored only 3 goals despite playing 36 games and missed opportunity after opportunity. His crossing and final ball were woeful too and another example of poor recruitment by the club. His one asset is his pace but he doesn't know how to use it often running the ball out of play and running into other players. Another player on a high salary that will likely move on in the Summer. 

Geraldo - Was brought to the club in the January transfer window to help boost the attack. Sored 0 goals and had 0 assists. Took a while to get up and running to due to lack of fitness. When signing any player in January especially in a relegation battle with little time left, how any club could sign a player who wasn't match fit is beyond belief. 

Orkan Cinar - Clearly has talent but another who makes poor decisions and his fitness is unacceptable for a professional football player. Looks like someone who isn't hungry enough to succeed at the game and will hopefully be moved on in the Summer. 

Torgeir Borven - For some strange reason Fuat Capa and Mustafa Dalci decided against making Borven the first choice striker. As soon as Karaman showed faith in Borven he became the main player in attack scoring 10 goals and his overall work rate and attitude was excellent. This was despite not being paid his salary. Ankaragucu were on great form and looked set to stay in the league until Borven got injured where the club have failed to win a single game. 

Aliou Badji - Has shown flashes of what he can do, but has been unlucky with injuries. If he was fully fit and playing every week he could have been an important player but will now move back to his parent club Al Ahly in the Summer. 

Emre Gural - Scored a couple of important goals and a few assists but like so many of the squad struggled with fitness and stamina. Ankaragucu should look to their academy instead of bringing back players such as Emre and Orkan. 

Hikmet Karaman - Almost pulled off the impossible in guiding Ankaragucu from the bottom of the table to safety. Unfortunately wasn't enough as issues off field with players not paid in 5 months, loosing Badji and Borven and rumored interference from Faruk Koca upset the harmony of the squad. We would love Hikmet to stay on at the club but with so much going on off the field he may opt to move on. Everything will depend on the clubs upcoming elections this month.