A few weeks ago a London-based Irishman named Brendan left a comment on the blog asking a few questions.
I notice that you have an amusing disregard for Ankaraspor, could you explain a bit of the background to this?
How does all this reflect itself this week for Gencler-Ankaraspor? Would Gencler have the vast majority support?
I promised that at one stage I'd explain all but have yet to really have a chance. Then in the last few days there has been a lively little discussion over at Gulay's blog where a fellow called Ahmet Turgut (who runs a site called Turkish soccer - its football Ahmet!) jokingly asked me to go easy on Ankaraspor as his brother-in-law Giray Bulak is their coach.
Well Eski Kanka has already stated that he doesn't mind Ankaraspor but I guess the time has come for me to outline my reasons.
First up. It is very difficult to get excited about a team that has no support. While Genclerbirligi may not have has many fans as Barcelona I've been to three or four Ankaraspor matches and rarely has the number of fans been more than 50.
One particular match earlier this year they were actually giving away tickets for the Ankaraspor side of the stadium and still practically no-one showed up. They charged us Gencler fans 50 kurush (about 10p) for our tickets and I'd just like to point out here that Viking Kanka Jens has yet to pay me back.
Ankara already has two fairly-well supported teams in the Super League, we don't need a third. Neither does Turkish football when you consider that cities like Antalya and Adana don't have any in the top flight this year.
Then there is the politics behind the team. It is owned by the Ankara Buyuksehir Belediyesi (The Greater Ankara Council).
I heard a nice little story from one of the Kankas on Saturday that council workers are given a day off work if they show up wearing the Ankaraspor gear. Urban myth? Possibly, but if true a lot of bus drivers would prefer to be terrorising us on the streets than watching Ankaraspor.
Now I question how do they pay their players and management. They certainly can't cover it with gate receipts. Perhaps they have lots of sponsors but my guess is that the taxpayers are shelling out for this. Considering just how much work needs to be done in Ankara, it does seem like a slightly inappropriate priority.
Even if it doesn't cost the taxpayers one kurush to support the team there is what the council is doing just across the road from the 19 Mayis stadium.
I have to admit that Genclik Park needed refurbishment but the plan to get all the bars out of the park is just evil. Eski Kanka and myself actually met each other in the Sahil Pub and it was our regular meet-up spot. If people without season tickets showed up to join us we could easily send them across the road to get them while we continued drinking the cheap beer.
Now this was just great, until the council cut off the water to the pub and we were forced to meet up in Kizilay instead.
I have nothing against the coach, the players, the ball boys or the style of football Ankaraspor play but for all the reasons outlined above, especially the anti-alcohol mayor, I will never go easy on Ankaraspor.
At the same time, however, you may have noticed that there aren't too many anti-Ankaraspor articles on the blog (this is the first I think), I just prefer to ignore them.