Tuesday, March 27, 2007

What a difference a Referee Makes

A strange event happened a couple of weeks ago in Edinburgh, the day before Hibs won the cup (has that been mentioned?) the normal mayhem that is primary school football disappeared in a sea of calm.

The game was involving Mini Red Card Kanka's (Formally Mini Hibbee Kanka) primary school football team.

A new referee strode onto the pitch sporting the Ankaragucu colours in a trendy tracksuit and a baseball cap. The kids who are normally very excitable were talked through the game by a experienced official and there was hardly a word out of place. They even accepted fouls against them which is unheard of.

I wish Sir Eski Kanka could have bottled some of his referee skills as he will be sorely missed.
The game I am pleased to say finished 4-2 to Oxgangs primary school against their local rivals Pentland primary.

Oxgangs went two goals up during the first half but a late collapse saw the halftime score at 2-2. Oxgangs started the second half in a good manner and restored their two goal advantage. A few chances came and went before Sir Eski Kanka brought a very enjoyable game to an end.

Mini Red Card Kanka scored the goal of the game before running into some trouble from Sir Eski, pictures will follow at the end of the week.
Hibbee Kanka

Monday, March 26, 2007


Greetings Kankas and Kankies.

The Scottish League Cup having been won by the men last Sunday in such fine style, it was the turn of the Hibernian Ladies to continue their quest for The Scottish Cup.

Having disposed of Hutchison Vale by 10-0 last weekend, they faced Arsenal North on Wednesday and won the match 6-1 to advance into the Quarter Finals.

Once again it was the prolific Kim Little who did the damage with the opener in the 1st half and a 2nd in the 2nd half to make the match secure for the team.

They next meet Raith Rovers Ladies in the Quarter Final to be played this coming weekend.

Watch this space for further news.

In the meantime, I suggest another trophy cabinet be installed at Easter Road Stadium to accommodate all the silverware which is expected this season !!!

All the best from Eski Kanka Jim

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Saturday night TV drama

Drunk Oz Kanka here.

Just a few lines on a wonderful evening of sport. Spine and French Kanka Hande popped over tonight to plonk themselves in front of the television and suffer from nicotine withdrawal symptoms. They were also here to watch some sport on the telly.

I don't want to go into the details of Turkey smashing the Greeks 4-1 but all I will say is that is was great to see, well... sort of... I had actually already figured out in my head what I was going to write here on the blog if Turkey had lost.

Unfortunately what I was going to say was extremely witty and very funny, but Turkey's performance put paid to that.

While I have nothing witty or funny to say I do want to impart to you all (all three of you) that I was extremely proud of Mrs. Oz Kanka this evening. As all of you know Mrs. Oz Kanka is a Turk and it thus impressed Spine especially, but also French Kanka Hande, that Mrs. Oz Kanka Elif kept on insisting that I change the channel every now and then to see how Australia were doing against the evil South Africans in the cricket World Cup.

Not only did she know who was winning from a quick look at the scores (for you non-cricket types, this is not an easy thing) but she was even referring to the Aussie players by their first names. The kudos I got frıom Spine for having taught my wife this was enormous. How many women in cricketing countries would be able to tell who was winning if they were told the South Africans needed 8.25 per over with 20 overs to spare and four wickets down???? Viking Kanka?

I'd forgotton of course that she had met quite a few of them a couple of years ago. Pictured below is Elif with a much younger-looking Glenn McGrath who last night took one for 62, not the best figures, but hey, it was a batsman's game.

NOTE: Elif is standing in a hole. Oh. I almost forgot, the Aussies dragged down, smashed in the face and then karate-chopped in the groin the South Africans to end up winners by 83 runs.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

An excuse for a very cheap joke

I was reading Hurriyet today and found out that Fenerbahce coach Zico has a website. Having little to do I checked it out and was particularly interested in the second story on the news page (at the moment it can be found here).

To save you the bother of going there, it is all propaganda anyway, let me reprint the first line to the story headed "Zico visits Fenerbahçe TV"

"Last Monday, I had the privilege to visit a project that is a dream of numerous rooters around the world," it reads, describing, yep, you guessed it, how he was interviewed by the team at Fenerbahce TV. I can only assume it wasn't the most vicious of interviews but it did get me thinking what "numerous rooters around the world" would actually be dreaming of.

He may be right, but I certain don't dream of Fenerbahce TV when I'm horizontally folk dancing.

Monday, March 19, 2007


Greetings Kankas and Kankies.

Sunday dawned with sunshine over Leith and I was up to see it. The adrenalin was pumping and sleep was impossible.

There was a large contingent of Hibs supporters in our party. Paddy Kanka Paul, Hibbie Kanka Athole, Red Card Hooligan Kanka (previously known as Mini Hibbie Kanka !!), No Card Kanka Ciaran, Gorgeous Kankie Rachel, Hibbie Kanka's brother Neil, No Card Kanka's pal Jake and yours truly.

We headed off to Hampden Park in Glasgow at about midday and approaching Glasgow we were welcomed by driving snow and sleet. We made it into the stadium which was full to capacity with 50,100 present.

The pre-match entertainment completed, the players came out to a tremendous welcome, especially from the Hibs supporters who were about 2/3 in the majority. The match then kicked off with the snow stilling pissing down in the gusting wind.

The driving snow didn't seem to affect the players and for the first 30 minutes it was all end to end stuff with chances for both team to take the lead. It was quite clear at this stage that both managers tactics were to attack. The Kilmarnock striker Naismith had 2 good chances and young Lewis Stevenson (Man of the Match) also went close.

Then on the half hour mark came the opening goal (always vital in Cup Finals in my opinion). A corner was swung in from the left by David Murphy to the back post and there was Captain Rob Jones thundering in to outjump everyone and power a header into the goal with goalkeeper Combe rooted to the line. The breakthrough !

It was still end to end until half time with Nish and Wright going close for Kilmarnock and Whittaker and Fletcher going close for Hibs.

Into the 2nd half and what a transformation. Hibs came out all fired up and took the match by the scruff of the neck. It was all Hibs now and it only took 15 minutes to go 2 up. A great pass from Steven Whittaker to Benji saw him turn defender Greer inside out before curling home a fine left foot strike with Combe helpless.

Hibs were rampant now with Scott Brown almost scoring from a Murphy cut back. However, he made amends a few minutes later when he sent Steven Fletcher clear who finished with a crisp left foot shot from just inside the penalty box. 3-0 now and motoring !

Perhaps it was over confidence or taking a breather, but Kilmarnock silenced the Hibs supporters with a goal on the 75th minute when Greer headed in after some sloppy defending by Hibs for the 1st and only time in the match.

That was to be the last cheer from the Kilmarnock end ! 10 minutes later Fletcher sent Benji clear for his 2nd goal of the match.

2 minutes later with the Kilmarnock end emptying fast, and a horror show from Combe with a clearance against the incoming Fletcher who was left with an open goal to make it 5. Not a happy day for Alan Combe but in fairness he was left exposed on numerous occasions by his defenders.

So, it was Rob Jones who collected the Scottish League Cup with the Hibs support in full voice. The lap of honour was conducted to a background of Proclaimers songs, and of course, the famous Sunshine Over Leith song. I noticed a few eyes with emotional tears around me !

Well done Hibs. A well deserved victory and a great team performance.

Back to league business in 2 weeks and the semi final of the Scottish FA Cup in mid April.

All the best from Eski Kanka in Edinburgh


Greetings Kankas and Kankies.

It was sunshine over Leith when we left Edinburgh yesterday but when we reached the outskirts of Glasgow the snow and sleet came down to greet us !!

However, who cares about the weather when it's Cup Final day. A fantastic footie performance by a truly great Hibs team. 1-0 up at half time and then Hibs stepped up a gear and ran out 5-1 (yes..... FIVE) winners.

Report and details to follow later today when I have fully recovered from my mega hangover !!

PHOTO 1 (above): Players coming out in front of 50,000 spectators.

PHOTO 2: Play in progress with the score at 1-0.

PHOTO 3: The Cup is presented

PHOTO 4: The lap of honour with the Kilmarnock end empty !!!

All the best from an ecstatic Eski Kanka Jim in Edinburgh


Congratulations to Eski Kanka Jimmy for Hibees superb 5-1 victory over the might of Kilmarnock yesterday. First trophy in his lifetime(?). Can we look forward to seeing the green machine in European action next season?

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Good and bad on the road

Trabzon 0 - 1 Ankaragucu
Denizli 3 - 2 Genclerbirligi

What an absolutely weird day for sport. India all out against Bangladesh for a measly 191. Pakistan getting belted by the Irish bowlers, (I bet Ed Joyce wishes he had stayed with the Irish team), France win the Six Nations in the very last seconds of their match against Scotland, Ankaragucu win in Trabzon for the first time in more than 15 years (I think I heard that on the radio) and Gencler go down to second-last placed Denizli.

Okay, that last one wasn't so amazing Gencler are pretty good at losing games we have to win, but you get my drift.

In fact I'm so amazed at the results today that I'm going to nick an idea from The Guardian's coverage of the cricket today. Red Smith on Bobby Thompson's World Series winning home-run said: "There is no way to tell it. The art of fiction is dead: reality has strangled invention."

Sir Eski Kanka is in northern Britain at the moment, no doubt down the pub with Hibee Kanka, as he is off to go and see his beloved Hibernian playing in some mickey mouse final on Sunday. So I've been left with the duty of doing the reports for both of Ankara's teams.

So let's start off with the good news, Ankaragucu's win over Trabzonspor.

Started off well enough for Ankaragucu with Tita coming close in the third minute and it wasn't long after that Bebbe sent in a pass from the right to ex-Genclerbirligi captain Mustafa Ozkan who shot the ball past the Trabzon goalkeeper.

I won't go into too much more detail as the match stayed at that score but looking at the Anatolian news agency report the rest of the match was all Trabzonspor trying to get back in. Ceyhun (whom Ankaragucu sold at the winter break) and Ayman (whom Genclerbirligi sold at the winter break) both feature prominently in the report but obviously none of them scored.

So well done to Ankaragucu, a tough away match and they came up trumps. By the way I will edit this at some stage once I find out when exactly was the last time Ankaragucu won away to Trabzon.

Now onto the depressing news that Gencler lost.

Let me firstly point out that Galatasaray only managed a draw last night, as did Kayserispor today. A win would have put us into a great position in the fight for a Champion's League place. Instead, they blew it.

Back to normal for this blog's favourite player, Isaac Promise, who seems to have missed a couple of chances at the beginning of the match, then missed when one-on-one with the keeper towards the end of the first half.

Denizli scored at the death of the first half and then Promise made amends of sorts at the beginning of the second by sending a pass in to Engin who shot from 30 metres out to score. 1-1.

A couple more good chances to Gencler failed and then Mehmet Nas, he who has been playing well lately but who also seems to be prone to giving away silly fouls, brings down a Denizli player in the box. Penalty awarded and converted. 2-1

Then a bloke who seems to have gone missing in the last month or so decides to have a go, good old Mehmet Cakir scores for Gencler. 2-2

No real description of Denizli's third and winning goal in the Anadolu report, pretty much just that it happened. 3-2

Denizli had a player sent off at 80 minutes and the last 10 minutes, plus extra time, was all Gencler but no goal was to be found. Depressing.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

It Couldn't Last!

After seeing Pompey soar(!) to the top of the Premiership earlier in the season, we're now struggling to find the next win. In fact, only one win since Boxing Day has rather put a dampener on our European aspirations for 2007/8. Still, the fans still remain upbeat about going on a "European tour", even if it is only Skonto Riga in the opening round of the Intertoto in early July, when most people are still thinking about going on their summer hols.

I managed to get to our game against Sheffield United in January, keeping up my record of having seen at least one game a season since being in Saudi from 1989. First away game for 8 years or so too. There is a special atmosphere when you follow your team away from home, at least certainly in England there is. Everyone sings, the beer flows (calm down Eski Jim) and most of us enjoy the day out even when we lose, which we didn't in this particular case.

4 of our last 5 home games have us up against Man Utd, Newcastle, Arsenal and Liverpool; what a run-in. At least, for the first time in 4 years, we're safe from relegation this time otherwise it really would be a miracle to escape this time. Staying up also puts us in a position to grab some of the bounty from Sky for next season, somewhere in the region of £30m if I recall correctly. Perhaps 'Arry Redknapp might be able to tempt some players that are under 35 years old to our humble ground?

I'm hoping to taste some Turkish delight sometime in July of this year, since my parents dumped beautiful Ingerlund for the (only just) sunnier climes of Koycegiz - apologies for the likely spelling mistake! All being well, Ankara could be a stop on my itinerary (how are you stocked for Efes Eski Jim?).

in the meantime, I'll be keeping my fingers crossed for a Pompey win on Saturday away to Reading - Play Up Pompey!

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Hibs 2-0 Falkirk

Hibs warmed up for the CIS League cup final with a comfortable two nil victory over Falkirk.
Two goals from our Morrocan striker 'Benji' secured the three points that keep our faint hopes of a UEFA cup spot alive.
Hibs created all the early running and should have scored two or three goals without reply in the first half. A mixture of good defending and poor finishing meant the teams went in at halftime all square. It may have been all square in terms of goals (or lack of them) but in 'men on the park' Hibs had the advantage as Falkirks Holden was red carded.
Two goals early in the second half killed the game off as a contest, this at least gave Hibs an easier run out in preparation for the cup final this Sunday.
So it is in anticipation that all Hibs fans look towards Sunday, but before that big day the Edinburgh branch of the Kankas have the opportunity to see Sir Eski Kanka show off his refereeing skills.
Sir Eski has offered to referee Mini Hibbee Kankas school match on Saturday. He sounds a bit eager to brandish the red card in my opinion but we will see if he needs it.
I don't now if school children these days show the same respect that Sir Eski would have witnessed in the 1920's but I will have them on their best behaviour.
Some interesting stories and pictures to follow.

Hibbee Kanka

Everyone gets 5 seconds of fame

As promised I managed to record the clip of Little Oz Kanka Matthew on TRT3 last night. If you notice carefully just a little bit after Matthew you will see a little boy in his blue Italy shirt. None other than Little Nordic Kanka Bendik.

I cut the recording as soon as the match started as I didn't think you'd like to get too bored.

Monday, March 12, 2007


Greetings Kankas and Kankies.

More depressing news from the ANKARAGUCU camp………..

ANKARAGUCU 0 Besiktas 1

Maniac Kanka Harun was at the match but unfortunately he couldn't make it for post-match drinkies and reflections due to a domestic crisis.

Oz Kanka, Marash Kanka Hakan, Battle Hardened Kanka Damon and I watched the match in The Cappadokia Bar along with the usual crowd of Ankara residents who support Istanbul teams !

Oz Kanka saw most of the 1st half and he reported that it was all ANKARAGUCU with the Besiktas goalkeeper, Runje, in outstanding form. Abdurrahman, Petkov and Devran all went close and would have opened the scoring but for the heroics of Runje in goal. Ricardinho, Bobo and Nobre were all posted missing in the 1 st half with Serkan having little or nothing to do.

So, to half time and instead of the usual boring commercials we were `entertained` with the violent scenes in the Stadium. Missiles and pieces of ripped out plastic chairs were flying around and lots of people (including women) trying to escape for cover. A shameful sight and for seemingly no apparent reason.

The ambulance crews were kept busy and when the players returned to the field the `war` was still going on. Hikmet Karaman ran to the wire fencing to appeal for calm but the Police were hauling people over the fence and arresting the culprits. Eventually, calm was restored but lots of blood had been spilled and I'm sure recriminations will follow !

The Deputy Prime Minister, Abdullah Gul, and the Sports Minister, Mehmet Ali Sahin, were at the match and Mr Sahin is reported in Hurriyet as saying that harsh measures must be taken to stop these frightening scenes occurring at footie matches. The ANKARAGUCU Chairman, Cemal Aydin, on the other hand, was trying to play down the incident (obviously fearful of the Club being punished !!).

The Hurriyet also reported that the violence was started by ANKARAGUCU and Bursaspor (brother team) supporters, and if this is proved correct, then I'm sure we can expect the Club to be punished. It is not too long ago we reported in this Blog The Battle of Kayseri, and more recently, the Battle of Sakaryaspor !!

If ANKARAGUCU is found guilty then I think we can expect to play one or even two home matches behind closed doors !!

Back to footie, and the 2nd half resumed 10 minutes late with more pressure from ANKARAGUCU. However, it has to be said that Besiktas were coming more into the match although it was mostly all ANKARAGUCU.

Bebbe had a great chance to open the scoring on the 50th minute mark when he was put through with only Runje to beat. He shot, but the ball rebounded off Runje and into the path of Mustafa who had an open goal. He shot, but Runje miraculously stuck out his left foot in a reflex action and the ball was deflected out for a corner. Frustration? Absolutely !!

Yordanov came on near the end and almost scored with a volley which went whizzing past the post.

With 5 minutes to go it looked done and dusted 0-0. Then…………. Tragedy ! Delgado was put through with a pass from the half way line with the ANKARAGUCU defence sleeping. Serkan came out to narrow the angle but committed himself a fraction too soon allowing Delgado to slip the ball between him and the post.

Remember the old cliché………… the game ain't over till it's over ??!!

We all make mistakes and I'm sure Serkan will be squirming when he sees a re-run of the goal !!

So, back into the relegation zone and only 4 points ahead of 3rd bottom club Erciyes, and with an away match in Trabzon next Saturday the nerve ends are beginning to jangle again !!!

Perhaps we could offer some `inducements` to Trabzon to `rest` Umut and Ceyhun ??!!

All the best from Eski Kanka Jim

Matthew becoming a Gencler star

Not that I'm a media whore or anything, well... not much anyway. I thought I should inform everyone that I shall be on Tele Lig on TRT 3 on Tuesday night.

Tele Lig is a show which according to the TRT website concentrates on football outside of the big three Istanbul teams. Zeki Col is the man in charge of the show and apparently I appeared in the broadcast which went out tonight (Sunday).

I had no idea I was being featured but was alerted to the fact by a Genclerbirligi forum member by the name of Asuman (Flying Dutchman Kanka: this was the girl we gave the lift back from the Yenikent Stadium a few weeks ago) who described the clip as "tek kelimeyle MUHTEŞEMdi". Whatever that means.

Having said all that, I actually think the clip they showed was not of me ranting on about what an idiot Ilhan Cavcav is but was instead of young Matthew singing "kirmizi, siyah, en buyuk, Gencler". Typical, here I am an intelligent Gencler supporter with an opinion I want shared around the world and instead they go for the pretty young face.

The show starts at 11:30 pm Tuesday night (TRT 3). I'll try to see if I can get a recording and put it on here (not the whole show, just the important bits).

Saturday, March 10, 2007


Not much of a match report from me today as I was rather distracted for large swathes of the match. No, it wasn't a good-looking girl sitting in front of me but the fact that I brought along my son, Matthew (age almost 3) for his first ever football match.

A good meet up at the Chopin saw French Kanka Hande and her man Spine (rather than the other way around), soon to be joined by Maniac Kanka Harun who was there on a mission to sell Gencler shirts. We bought three, all official merchandise, along with three key-rings. All kitted up we were drinking our beers and eating our kofte when Nordic Kanka Stian and his little boy Bendik walked in. A minute or two later Flying Dutchman Kanka Carlo showed up and we were in full swing.

It was getting quite close to kick-off and I wanted to get off to the stadium but who insists on showing up and insisting on a last minute beer? None other than Smart Arse Yanky Kanka Dave and his good wife Mrs. Smart Arse Yankee Kanka Suzanne. Obviously, once they ordered a beer so did the rest of table. The sacrifices one makes for the kankas!

Finally we made it to the stadium and amazingly, considering the weather was perfect, tickets were bloody cheap at just 2 TL (about 1.50 US dollars) and that Gencler are riding high in the league, there was very little difficulty getting into the stadium.

(PHOTO: Oz Kanka and Little Oz Matthew)

The only difficulty was when PC Plod smelt on my breath that I may have had a beer in the last two weeks.

"Are you drunk?", PC Plod asked me.

"No", I replied.

"Let's go and see my captain", says PC Plod.

Holding on to little Matthew's hand we go off to see someone with brain. As soon as the captain realises that as I'm with a three year-old I may not fit the perfect description of a hooligan intent on destroying the peace I was told to go on my way. For God's sake, I only had a couple of beers! NOTE: Remember to eat Fisherman's Friends closer to gate, not in the taxi on the way to match.

Onto the match.

Genclerbirligi 0 - 0 Gaziantepspor

Both Matthew and Bendik loved the atmosphere at the match... the singing, the clapping. Ah, almost forgot. As we were walking in some camera guys from TRT zoomed in on us (I'd like to think it was because they saw how good looking I am). Instead of concentrating on me they pointed the camera at Matthew who did a wonderful version of "kirmizi, siyah, en buyuk, Gencler". I have no idea what programme they plan on showing this footage but if anyone sees it please tell me.

(PHOTO: Little Nordic Kanka Bendik wearing what looks like something Japanese out of WWII but is in fact merely proof he is prepared to die for Gencler. Oz Kanka and Little Oz Kanka in the background)

Back in the stadium, the match kicks off and... well... I guess it can be best summed up by Nordic Kanka Stian:

"I just saw your son yawning for 30 seconds".

As far as I remember, and don't forget that I was distracted quite often during the whole match, Draman Haminu had a chance at goal... but blew it.

Gencler just didn't seem to be up for it. If anyone looked like scoring it was Gaziantep, and quite frankly they were rubbish, which made us look like total idiots.

I have no idea why but our coach Mesut Bakkal decided to replace Draman not long after (we are still in the first half here).

(PHOTO: French Kanka Hande and Flying Dutchman Kanka Carlo)

Second half wasn't much better, Isaac and Okan up front weren't doing much, and Mr. Fish managed to bugger up a fine chance when he headed the ball wide. I should also point out we were bloody lucky on a number of occasions when Gaziantep missed sitters.

Then Tozo, the Brazillian who had replaced Draman, was given a second yellow card (quite deservedly). This was around about the 60th minute mark and amazingly this was the spark that woke Gencler up.

We had attack after attack and if just one of the chances in the last few minutes had gone in... I'd be a happy man.

But they didn't and we left the stadium in low spirits.

Not to matter, it was off to Sakarya for more beers and little Matthew has now learnt what all this football stuff is all about.

ie. go to the pub... go to match... watch rubbish... go back to the pub. Get told off when you get home for being late.

I have to admit, it was a real father-son bonding sort of day. Loved it.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007


Greetings Kankas and Kankies.

I think it is fair to say that The Round Ball in Ankara has for the most part been heavy into criticism since its inception, and perhaps that is not surprising if you support ANKARAGUCU or Genclerbirligi.

So, it is with pride that I tell you about an instance of praise been meted out to footie fans which I saw on the HIBERNIAN web site today.

The Chief Constable of Dumfries and Galloway sent a letter to Hibernian Football Club recently praising the behaviour of the Hibs supporters at the recent Scottish Cup match between Queen of the South and Hibernian. Surprisingly for such an occasion, there were zero arrests and zero cautions. He went on to praise their good humour and sportsmanship.

It is easy to criticise and quite common in most walks of life these days. However, not so common to see or hear of praise being given even when it is warranted.

Perhaps the ManYoo and Lille managers should engage their brains before their tongues tonight ??!!

Congratulations to the Hibs supporters in question and long may your sportsmanship continue.

All the best from Eski Kanka Jim (standing on his soap box !!)

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Any excuse will do

Genclerbirligi chairman Ilhan Cavcav has in recent games been slagging off his own club's supporters for not coming out in force last week for the Gencler-Fener Turkish cup quarter-final.

It is getting all a bit weary to hear this bloke drone on about how we don't come out in force. While you will definitely hear plenty of criticism from us that too many people in Ankara support Istanbul teams you will never hear us slag off anyone who actually supports Gencler (or Ankaragucu for that matter).

Unlike Mr. Cavcav who seems to enjoy taking shots at his own team's rather small fan base.

This is not supposed to be a rant against Cavcav (well, only a bit) but what the hell did he expect? Cavcav put the prices for Maraton tickets at 30 tl. While many of us yabancis can afford this how many working class Turks can blow that sort of money. I know of many Gencler supporters who arranged to watch the match at tea houses because they simply couldn't afford the prices.

To put it in perspective, tickets for the Galatasaray - Trabzonspor match this weekend are miles cheaper, not to mention Ankaraspor who are currently filling their new stadium out in the middle of nowhere thanks to selling tickets for just 50 kuruş (about 30 cents US).

That price by the way is exactly the same as the price was for the good seats at the first ever Genclerbirligi - Fenerbahce match back in 1928 (Sir Eski Kanka had a cold and couldn't make it to the match).

According to Tanil Bora's book "Ankara rüzgarı" (from which I will no doubt be subjecting you to even more trivia facts) some 3,150 showed up for that match. In a piece of genius from which our current chairman should learn from, but which he won't of course, women were let in free.

The point of this post. Not sure really but any excuse to have another go at Ilhan Cavcav. "Yonetim istifa"

Monday, March 05, 2007

Hibernian 0-2 Rangers

Hibs indifferent league form continued with a two goal defeat to second placed Rangers. This defeat makes it very difficult for Hibs to catch even fourth place although with a cup final and a semi final to come there is still plenty to smile about.
On Sunday it was two goalkeeping errors that seperated the sides. The first saw Simon Brown leave a huge gap at his left hand post which Charlie Adam picked off with no problem. That was after just four minutes, the second came after sixty minutes and saw a harmless shot from the same player trickle through Simon Browns legs and into the net.
This knocked the heart out of the Hibs support who from then on could hardly bring themselves to abuse Kevin Thompson who was returning to Easter Road for the first time in a Rangers jersey.
All in all a very disappointing result.
Next up for Hibs is Falkirk at home followed by the League Cup Final. We look forward to welcoming Sir Eski Kanka to Hampden for that game, his ticket is safely locked away from other Hibbees who are fighting for tickets.

C'mon the Hibs

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Fridge-Makers go down

With Fenerbahce finally behind us, we've played them four times this season and lost four times, it was time to look ahead and upwards this weekend and Genclerbirligi pulled off a great away win.

Fridge-Makers Manisaspor 0 - Genclerbirligi 3

According to a report posted on the Gencler fans site Alkaralar by a fellow called "Ulastol", who made up 10 per cent of the Gencler fans at the match, the Fridge-Makers came out strong but were unable to get the goal they wanted.

Towards the end of the first half a man who seems to be coming on, Isaac Promise, started a counter-attacking move, passed the ball to Okan Ozturk who smashed it from outside the box and into the net.

The Anatolian news agency report of the match it looks like Gencler came out for the kill.

On 56 minutes Mehmet Nas, our best player a few days ago against Fenerbahce, sent in a pass from the right, Okan Ozturk jumped high and headed it at goal, only for it to come back off the post, to where our man of the moment, Isaac Promise, headed it into the goal.

2-0 up and all going well.

Okan then capped the game off with his second goal of the match. A penalty given after Mehmet Nas was fouled in the box.

Back to Ulastol's thoughts on the match. Mehmet Nas and our defender Traore were for him our best players. Even though we won it 3-0 Ulastol still reckons we don't have that dangerous finishing touch. He also pointed out that once the third goal had gone in the Fridge-Maker fans started calling for Ersun Yanal's resignation. Wasn't all that long ago when they were at the top of the league all the top clubs wanted him. Quite a fall for the former Ankaragucu, Gencler and Turkey coach.

A good win which moves us up into fifth place, just two points behind second-placed Besiktas. Looking like a nail-biting end to the season.


Greetings Kankas and Kankies.

ANKARAGUCU's world record attempt at 3 wins in a row was blown off course yesterday when they were brought down to earth by lowly Denizli. The result was -

Denizlispor 1 ANKARAGUCU 0

No details of the match were given in Turkey's finest, The Hurriyet, but thanks to the `freebie`, Bugun, I can give brief details.

Denizli came out of the starting blocks like an express train and took control of the match, and apart from one near miss by Sedat, it was all Denizli. Then in the 40th minute Denizli scored the goal that their play had deserved. Ahmet received a pass from Yusuf who released it to Adriano. He crossed into the box and there was Fatih to head the ball past Serkan for the only goal of the match.

No details of what happened in the 2nd half. However, as Bebbe received 3 stars, I suppose he ran himself ragged again as the lone ranger up front !!!

As one would expect, the Denizli coach, Guvenc Kurtar, was upbeat about his team's performance and is quoted as saying that Denizli will NOT be relegated at the end of the season. That remains to be seen with the situation at the bottom in a finely balanced state.

Back to the drawing board for Hikmet Bey this week as he plots the downfall of Besiktas next weekend. As conquerors of CimBom yesterday, Besiktas will be coming to Ankara with their tails up !!!

I noticed that ANKARAGUCU introduced a new player to the team yesterday. Perhaps Maniac Kanka can give some background on Aleksandrov ?

Details for next weekend's matches will be sent by email by Oz Kanka nearer the time.

All the best from Eski Kanka Jim

Friday, March 02, 2007

The Cup has gone

Nathan the weird Yank who supports Fenerbahce already has his report up. I am amazed. Here I am in Ankara, I go to the match and still Nathan in the US of A beats me to a report. Perhaps I shouldn't be going out for post-match beers. Nahhh, bugger that... you lot will just have to wait.

It was all high hopes pre-match. This was the return leg for a Turkish Cup match. The first had been won 2-1 by Fenerbahce but that meant we had an away goal.

Thursday night in Ankara and the weather was pretty good and a good crowd should have been expected. Unfortunately Ilhan Cavcav decided to fleece us all by charging well over the odds. The result: the Fener fans were out in force and although we tried to make as much noise as possible there was no way we could compete with Fener's Ankara supporters.

The most popular chant of the evening was surely "you are all Istanbul children" (which is a much better insult in Turkish than it is in English). It pissed them off. And they should be pissed off. If you live in Ankara, support a bloody Ankara team!

But I'm getting ahead of myself. I was waiting patiently in the Chopin Bar, beer at hand and reading a wonderful article in Radikal newspaper by Altan Oyman concerning a recent fatwa (religious ruling) by the mufti of Istanbul in which the mufti ruled that it was wrong for good Muslims to use a fork with their left hand. I was loving it, the article that is. Unlike the Yanks, I was taught by my parents that the fork should always be held in the left hand.

The idea that I may go to hell for my table manners had me giggling away when my mobile phone rang.

"Oz Kanka, I'm in the Chopin Bar. Where are you?", said Romantic Kanka Gokhan.

"I'm also in the Chopin," I said.

Gokhan at this point realised that the voice on the phone was actually weaker than the voice just behind him. It seems as if I was so involved in reading my newspaper article, and the fact that Romantic Kanka can't believe that I actually read newspapers, meant that we couldn't see each other.

Never mind as Oguz (Kanka name yet to be found) joined us a second or two later. A few more beers... and in Gokhan's case not enough small fish, and then it was on to the stadium.

Spine, dressed in a suit and tie... but still with his Gencler scarf and funny hat, joined us and within seconds we got the tickets and were in.

(PHOTO: Spine in a funny hat)

Finally for some football.
Genclerbirligi 0 - 1 Fenerbahce

We started off fast. In fact it was the best start to match I had seen from Gencler for a long, long time.

Knowing we needed to win to get through to the next round the Gencler players were definitely up for it. Just seven minutes in we thought we had it. Mehmet Nas (whom if I don't mention again I must admit had a great game) sent the ball to Mehmet Cakir on the right. Cakir was clear, well... pretty much clear, he had a bit of an angle, and really should have at least forced a save. Instead he sent it out. If that had been a goal... and God damn it should have been... it could have changed the whole match.

Instead, and I'm getting sick of these "insteads", Fener came in with a nice move and Mehmet Yozgatli scored for Fenerbahce.

After such a promising start it was only appropriate for the man we all love, yep, Isaac Promise, to bugger up a brilliant chance close to the half-time mark.

A few seconds later Mr. Fish also stuffed up by sending a header over the post.

At around about this stage we were joined by Kyrgyz Kanka Scott (explanation too long) who had missed us all earlier on. I should also point out that Sir Eski Kanka was also at the match but unlike us plebs he decided to use his contacts and watch the match for free (and in comfort) in the protocol section. The term "class traitor" comes to mind.

(PHOTO: Kyrgyz Kanka Scott finally finds us)

Half-time and we were down 0-1, needing two goals to send the game into extra time.

I don't know what was put into the orange juice of the Gencler players at half time, but, by God, I want some of it.

This was much better stuff. It was full-on attack. Fenerbahce looked lost and if it wasn't for some inept last passes we could have gone two-three-four up.

As Spine pointed out at the time, it wasn't so much Isaac who stuffed up but Okan Ozturk. Okan may have scored plenty of goals in the league but tonight he just couldn't keep his headers down on goal. I also have to point out that I'm not sure if the midfield strategy of sending high passes in to Okan is working too well.

Having said all that, I thought we didn't play too badly. Mehmet Nas in particular played well and compared to the weekend match against Kayserispor I'd have to say we have learnt a lot.

So that's the end of out Cup run. Just the league to play for now.

As you all know, this blog has no, repeat no, none, zilch, love for Genclerbirligi Chairman Ilhan Cavcav. It was therefore gratifying that at one stage our supporters were singing "Yonetim istifa". The (Ankara-living-traitor) Fener fans a little while later also started shouting "Cavcav istifa".

This was the only occasion in which we actually agreed.