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.