Thursday, May 22, 2008

Genclerbirligi season tickets on sale soon

Well, well, well. After praising the Genclerbirligi club (and of course the great people at alkara) for their organising and paying for the trip to Bursa for the Turkish cup final, I find myself once again saying "well done".

The reason is this news which I have just seen. Basically, it says that Genclerbirligi are only going to sell season tickets for Maraton for the coming season... and (this is the bit you will like) they will cost 50 tl.

Yep, just 50 tl (around 40 dollars). This is for a season ticket on the half-way line. I'll buy a couple, as usual, and I'm sure we will be able to sort out the rest of you lot some time soon.

The tickets go on sale on 1 June, according to the report. I'll send out an e-mail closer to the date, so don't bother contacting me yet.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Gencler sign another Aussie

photo nicked from

Some great news today. Isaac Promise is trying to leave Genclerbirligi and confirmation came through that Bruce Djite, an Aussie who last year played for Adelaide is to sign for us on Thursday.

Bruce (who was actually born in the the USA and therefore his parents had probably never heard of Monty Python's famous University of Wooloomooloo skit) will arrive in Ankara on Thursday for a health check and then is to sign.

According to an article in the Adelaide Advertiser the other day Gencler will be paying 650,000 Aussie dollars (approximately 700,000 tl) for the striker.

The Isaac Promise wanting to leave stuff came from a Gencler spokesperson. Hassle is, no one wants to buy him.

To get you all in the mood for the "we love you Bruce" chants that will be sung in the coming season check out the famous Monty Python skit.

Monday, May 19, 2008


Greetings Kankas and Kankies.

OK, so it wasn’t a complete disaster of a season. That belonged to Kasimpasa, Manisa and Rize !

Some teams and supporters might be happy enough to finish in 8th position in the League. Cemal Aydin for one will be happy enough, but this supporter of 20 years is most definitely NOT !! Surely teams of ANKARAGUCU’s stature (and Genclerbirligi for that matter) should be setting their sights higher ?!

Since Ersul Yanal left ANKARAGUCU (a sad day in our history) it has been one season’s struggle after another and this is just totally unacceptable for a team from the capital city of Turkey. At the very least, ANKARAGUCU should be aiming for UEFA Cup qualification EVERY season !

This season’s statistics, for example, don’t make happy reading ……

HOME - Won 7 Drawn 6 Lost 4

AWAY - Won 4 Drawn 4 Lost 9

GOAL TALLY - For 36 Against 44

So, you can see for yourself where the problem areas are !

Oz Kanka is always criticising me for repeating myself, but my excuse is that I’m not a professional journalist ! I have to say this yet again (and maybe not for the last time !!) ……… in the words of the late great Jock Stein……… The best form of defence is ……… ATTACK !!!

OK, so it didn’t do much good for Kevin Keegan in his first stint at Newcastle Utd with his `gung ho` tactics, but what Jock Stein meant was not just a `tally ho` attitude. Sir Alex Ferguson understands !!

When he left Hibernian to manage Celtic, Jock Stein started to build his team from the goalkeeper, then defence, into midfield and the finishing touches were his strikers. When the puzzle had been solved, and all the pieces were in place, then his plan of ATTACK was implemented. This was never more obvious than when Celtic beat Inter in 1967 to win the European Cup !

Thinks……. Perhaps if Walter Smith had followed these tactics the UEFA Cup might be resting in Scotland this season instead of in Russia !!

Of course, this type of team building takes time and money. So, the first priority is to find a Coach, Manager and Chairman who have the ability to manage a successful team and who share the ambition of the Club and its supporters. Unfortunately, we don’t have the wherewithal of talent, sponsors and management in Ankara at the moment.

Anyone out there (Melih Gokcek ??!!) listening to the words of this Blog ?? If so, let’s get the show on the road !!!

Ever the optimist, let’s see what happens during the summer season of wheeling and dealing.

The League season resumes business on 22 August, so we have about 3 months to wait for hostilities to commence.

All the best from Eski Kanka Jim

Tuesday, May 13, 2008


Greetings Kankas and Kankies.

No, not the edible variety but the Funny Shaped Ball variety !!

I decided to boycott the Round Ball game last Saturday in what was a fight between the Big 3 and Sivas with little else at stake. Yawn… yawn….. boring !!!

I fought my way into the Red Lion Club through the thousands ……. well, hundreds ……. well, a few anyway, Funny Shaped Ball fanatics to watch the Play-Off match between The Cherries (Gloucester) and The Blues (Bath). Smart Arse Yankee Kanka was also there !

Lots of shouting and chanting ….. Glossssstirrrrrrr …… Glossssstirrrrrr and the one Bath supporter in Ankara was posted missing !!!

Bath took the game to The Cherries in the 1st half and must have had about 80% ball possession, but the Gloucester defence was in uncompromising mood and were able to stem the tide. Only 2 penalties separated the sides at half time.

Into the 2nd half and Bath continued to retain most of the ball possession until Gloucester seized the initiative and touched down in a breakaway move which had Bath back-pedalling to no avail. However, the conversion was missed but there was still all to play for.

All credit to Bath for their efforts and never-say-die spirit. Another penalty was added to their score but in all honesty they never looked like crossing the Gloucester line against a very impressive defence.

Gloucester 8 Bath 6

So, Gloucester go into the semi-final with home advantage and are surely favourites to win the League. Can’t remember who the other semi-finalists are due to the post match celebrations of singing, dancing, and ……. oh yes, ….. drinking !!!

I am considering a career change and becoming a Rugby reporter. How do you rate my chances ???

All the best from Funny Shaped Ball Supporter (for a day !!), Eski Kanka Jim

PS.... Photo shows.....

Eski Kanka sporting his `ancient` Cherries outfit, Cherry Kanka Rob in a `modern` outfit, Darling Wendy Kankie, and the 2 Baby Cherries Rebecca and Stephen

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Gencler lose last match of the season

The headline says it all. Following the midweek loss Genclerbirligi put out a makeshift side on Saturday and lost at home to Sivas, 0-2. I didn't go to the match and the papers gave bugger all in their reports.

So that's it. Season over. At least we didn't get relegated.


Greetings Kankas and Kankies.

........ and so, another season endeth on a happy note, but, ...... should we celebrate ? Debatable me thinks !!

OK, let's start with the good news .....

Kayseri 0 ANKARAGUCU 2

A surprise result according to the form book. Kayseri on a high after their exploits in Bursa and qualification for the UEFA Cup, against one of the weakest teams in the League `on the road`.

With nothing at stake except pride, we have to say that it was a great result, taking into account that ANKARAGUCU went to Kayseri with only The Lone Ranger (Bebbe) up front (AGAIN) !

However, surprise ..... surprise ..... Bebbe opened the scoring near the half-hour mark to send shock waves around Turkey. Was anyone really interested in what was going on in Istanbul or Trabzon ??!!

Another surprise .... Zafer back between the sticks for ANKARAGUCU - a blast from the past !

Then, an even bigger surprise ..... Cem Can (have I mentioned before that he was supposed to take Ceyhun's place in midfield ??!!) scored 5 minutes later.

More `shock waves` and everone hit Google Search to find out ...... who is Cem Can ??!!

OK, OK, ...... I'm being cynical, but you haven't heard the bad news yet ......

A few days ago, the news leaked out that Bebbe was about to be sold to Sekiztrash or Istanbul BBS for 1.5 Million Euros !

Inspiring news to ANKARAGUCU fans ? As I have said a thousand times, he is our only recognised striker and we are going to off-load him ?! Where is Cemal Aydin coming fom ? Jupiter or Mars ??

Luvvlie Cuddlie Melih Gokcek's son, Ahmet, is reported as saying that he wants to take over ANKARAGUCU and is coming with 50 Million Dollars to put in the kitty.

Whoopee says the masses, but hey, .... wait a minute. Let's remember who his daddy is, and ..... more importantly, will Cemal be a happy bunny to give up the reins so easily after a decade of an easy way of building his already substantial bank balance even further ??!!

We must wait for the outcome of this wheeling-and-dealing in the corridors of power, but in the meantime, let's consider who is going to lead the line next season !

The Tortoise (Diawara) and the Dwarf (Jaba) ? I think not ! So who ? Watch this space for developments as the summer season unfolds and the new season approaches.

Mmmmmmm ..... I think it will soon be time to visit my doctor for another prescription of optimism pills !!!

As for the future after summer, ........ bring on the Sportswriters Cup and an invititation to ANKARAGUCU ...... THIS season ! Then, ...... the UEFA Cup !!! Am I dreaming again ??

All the best from Eski Kanka Jim

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Penalties sink Genclerbirligi

Let me get the painful bit out of the way straight away.

Turkish Cup final

Kayserispor 0 - 0 Genclerbirligi after extra time (Kayseri win 11-10 on penalties)

It was a depressing end to what was a great day. French Kanka Hande, Spine and myself started up early and at about 9 a.m. armed with refreshments and buns from Capitalist Chain Coffees we headed off for the Genclerbirligi training grounds to join the crowds heading off to Bursa for the final.

French Kanka Hande starts the day with a coffee

As predicted by Spine the buses left late but no-one really cared, nor were we annoyed when the buses stopped five minutes later so we could could stock up on beer. It was 11:30 a.m., still hardly past Umit Koy and the three of us (Maniac Kanka Harun failed to show up) were sitting in the sun at petrol station drinking beer. French Kanka admitted she had never done such a thing. Last time I had done it I was probably 17.

The buses finally get going (we were with the five Alkaralar buses) and well, you all know what bus trips are like, except we had beers...

But quickly moves onto the beers

At lunchtime we stopped in some town (Bozyurek I think) and I hear someone call out "Oz", it was Maniac Kanka Harun who was travelling with one of the other supporters groups. This called for a celebration and so French Kanka and myself went for a walk, found a shop and bought some more beers.

Maniac Kanka was clearly not the only Ankaragucu fan to be in the convoy on our way to Bursa as French Kanka found pro-Gencler, Gucu graffiti on our way back from the shop. Gencler fans would never do such a thing.

Meet the others and for the second time that day we found ourselves sitting in the sun at a petrol station drinking beers.

Oz Kanka, Maniac Kanka, French Kanka and Spine enkoying the atmosphere of another petrol station

A bit of a sleep on the bus and into Bursa. We are forced by the police to stop a kilometre away from the stadium and walk. Singing as we go, getting stares from the locals and cheers from others. Ertank drove with some mates of his to the match and he met as as we waited for our tickets and then it was into the stadium having luckily arrived late enough to miss the pre-match entertainment.

The lot

The Kayseri fans were in full force. They had obviously arrived well before we had and pretty much filled the maraton and the away kale arkasi. We only had a couple of thousand fans in the gecekondu section, but were boosted by a few Ankaragucu fans and a very impressive Bursaspor contingent who sang pro-Gencler songs all not (interspersed with pro-Ankaragucu and pro Bursa cheers).

Flares at the match

The Game

This was typical of Genclerbirligi. How many times this season have we controlled play but not been able to get shots on goal? Kayseri seemed as if they were playing for penalties from the very start.

Mehmet Cakir missed a couple of which really should have been put away and I think we only got one shot from outside the box actually on target.

Towards the end of regulation time it was clear that Gencler were getting tired but we held on. Extra time and we could have scored but failed... Towards the end it was so clear that Kayseri wanted penalties as they spent most of the time on the ground.

We played well, proof of which came during the presentation ceremony with Mehmet Nas named as "Man of the Match", but not good enough.


Penalties are evil. Dominate the game and then ... arrgh

I'm not going to describe every shot, I'd be here forever. But the key moments.

Kayseri keeper takes their first penalty and scores. It should have been taken again but the referee was incompetent.

Kahe takes our first penalty and misses. From this point on we were under the kosh.

Peric saves one and the first five shots ends up 4-4. Sudden death.

Hopes still high

We follow Kayseri shot for shot and then Peric saves one. Joy in the stands. Get the next one and we have won.

Up steps El Saka. Shot saved.... Hearts collapse.

A few more shot for shots, including our keeper Peric scoring, and then Peric is a hero again... or maybe the shot missed, not sure.

Again, this one for the Cup and Ergun misses. Heads in hands... but we were still in it until...

Mehmet Cakir steps up for the second time (all players had already had a go and they were in the second round).

Cakir misses. The Kayseri players and supporters go wild and we are stunned. A minute or so later we Gencler supporters applaud Kayseri on winning and they reply with "fuck you". Classy that lot.

We congratulate Kayseri. Next to Oz Kanka is Ertank.

We call over the distraught Genclerbirligi players and give them a warm round of applause. If you think we were downhearted I can't imagine what it must be like for them, especially those who missed in the shoot-out.

Us Gencler supporters for not the first time that night started up chants for Bursaspor, their supporters came dressed in their colours but shouted for us all night. Great stuff and I hope the club do something to express their thanks for such support.

Back onto the buses and the long long journey home.

I also have to give a big thumbs up to the Genclerbirligi administration, something I don't think I have done for a long long time. The club paid for the buses and tickets to the match. I can't imagine that happening anywhere else.

Back in Ankara at 5:30 am and then off to work. Deflated? yes... but still a great experience.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008


Greetings Kankas and Kankies.
The following message has been sent by Mountaineering Kanka Robbie.........
"First off, I'd like to apologize for missing more than my share of matches this season. What good is supporting a team if you rarely go to see them play? I'm just getting to the end of a two-year long diploma program, and it has me running in circles at the moment. The good news is, Judy and I will not be departing Ankara this year as previously thought, and thus we will be around for another great season of Gucu footie next year! Glad to say it as I (sniff) would've missed all the (sniff) great friends we've made. Now however, no goodbyes, but only hellos next season...hopefully to my dream, 50 points!

Regarding the picture, glad to say that yet another peak has been claimed for the glory of Ankara Gucu by yours truly. The peak is Jebel Toubkhal, and at 4167 meters, it is the highest peak in the Atlas Mountains and the highest in North Africa. Briefly, the climb wasn't too difficult. We started at about 6:30 in the morning from a mountain hut after having hiked to it the previous day. There was quite a lot of snow still, so we were able to practice using our crampons. By 9:30, a mere 3 hours after leaving the hut, I was unfurling the flag of champions on the top of North Africa! The snow also afforded us opportunities for glissading (basically sliding down on your ass) on the descent, and by 11:00 we were back at the hut. 1000 meters of descent in an hour and a half! The next day we climbed another smaller peak called Tizi N' Aguelzim, and then began our trek back down to the trailhead. All in all, a great time.

Hope you enjoy the picture and can't wait to see all of you at the Kanka Barbecue!

Mountaineering Kanka Robbie"
On behalf of all the kankas, we are very pleased to hear that you won't be leaving us Robbie and Judy. It goes without saying that your absences this season have been missed, but we wish you further success with your career.
Well done on conquering yet another of the great peaks of the world. What's next ? Perhaps Mount Everest ??!!
I'm still trying to muster up the courage to attempt Elmadag Mountain in Ankara !!!
All the best from Eski Kanka Jim

Monday, May 05, 2008

Hibs Still Chasing Europe

Hibs, Dundee Utd, Motherwell and Aberdeen are still fighting it out for the last UEFA cup slot.

Motherwell still lead the pack followed a point behind by Hibs and Dundee Utd. Aberdeen are a further two points behind.

Hibs last three games have seen them draw 1-1 with Dundee Utd, lose 2-1 to Aberdeen and Draw yesterday 0-0 with Rangers. Not a great points tally but at least they are still in with a shout.

Hibs last two games are away to Celtic on Saturday and then at home to Motherwell on Thursday 22nd May. The last home game against Motherwell has been delayed to try and help Rangers in their quest for winning the UEFA cup next week.

Bye bye Rize

As Sir Eski explained in his post below the kankas met up at the Chopin and after a few beers I said farewell and as they went off to watch the Ankaragucu match I headed off to the Kapadokia where the plan was to watch the Fener-Genclerbirligi match.

But no... even in a pub owned and run by a Genclerbirligi club member the first choice match was Sivas-Galatasaray. I complained at first and they decided they would show five minutes of one and then five minutes of the other. While it didn't quite turn out like that it was a compromise I had to live with.

After being joined by Smart Arse Yankee Kanka it dawned on us that Ankara needs some sports bars, places to avoid like the plague during the week but which have wall-to-wall TVs so we could have watched all three matches that were being televised last night. Admittedly it doesn't happen often but last night it would have been quite handy.

All that is a long way of excusing myself on giving any commentary on Fenerbahce's 3-2 victory over Genclerbirligi.

Not much commentary anyway. Kahe scored first to huge cheers in the Kapadokia. There were also cheers when Fener got back in it thanks to a handball that no-one seemed to spot. Actually that might have been Fener's second goal... I'm not sure, by this stage the amber fluid was taking affect.

Hakan Aslantas scored our second goal but that was towards the end of the match and in the end we lost 3-2. Annoying, yes... but back to atmosphere in the pub. As I was saying there were cheers for every goal in the two matches we were watching... for Sivas, Galatasaray, Fenerbahce and Genclerbirligi. Of course it was all a case of "my enemy's enemy is my friend". The Turkish Super Lig seems to be making a habit of having exciting races for the title and last night's matches were fun.

Unfortunately Sivas won't be winning that title after losing 5-3 to Galatasaray. But for Smart Arse Yankee Kanka and myself the biggest cheers came after the tickertape thing on the screen showed that Kasimpasa was two-nil up against Rize. In the end Rize got one back but after that loss Genclerbirligi are officially staying up, no matter what we do next week against Sivas.

Shame we couldn't destroy Fenerbahce's slim hopes of winning the league, but I don't really care. From reports I've seen on the Gencler fan forums we played well. In the end that is all that matters because on Wednesday we are off to Bursa for the Cup final against Kayseri.

Spine, French Kanka Hande, Maniac Kanka Harun and myself are making the trip. I think Ertank is as well but he has gone all quiet. Wish us luck!

KO is 8pm by the way and those kankas left behind in Ankara can watch the match at the Chopin.


Greetings Kankas and Kankies.

You can’t take loyalty from an ANKARAGUCU supporter, as was demonstrated last night for the last home match of the season with an impressive turn-out from all the tribunes. However, the loyalty I refer to is with present coach, Hakan Kutlu’s tactics.

I’m not saying that Eski Kanka is God’s Gift to footie coaches, but surely it is not asking too much to send out an attacking team for the last home match of the season ?!

I am really disappointed that he has learned absolutely `zip` nothing from his time as a player when Ersun Yanal was coach. Fair dinkum, he was a defender and he probably still thinks as a defender, but he must try and see the big picture, ie, the only way to play the Big 3 (especially at home) is to ……. Attack (how many times do I have to repeat this obvious message ??!!

In the 1st half last night we had another spectacle of The Lone Ranger (Bebbe) on his own up front guarded by THREE Besiktas defenders !

Message……. Hakan, I am recommending that you attend a Yooro sponsored coaching course this summer !!!

ANKARAGUCU 0 Besiktas 2

It was pissing down with rain when Battle Damaged Kanka joined me in The Chopin Bar and we therefore retreated inside to take cover. We were joined later by Rip Off Kanka, Kaleci Kanka and Oz Kanka, who later left us to watch the Fener v Gencler match on TV in The Cappadokia Bar.

Off to the Stadium then where we were joined by Maniac Kanka. It was a sight to behold with the Sekiztrash `Ankara` supporters outsung from the beginning to the end of the match ! But, oh, how I wish we could have wiped the smiles off those smug ugly faces !!

Murat Erdogan led the team out in place of the still absent and injured Kirita and the match began at a frantic pace. Lots of slipping and sliding on the wet surface but the match was ranging from end to end.

Gokhan had a few long range efforts and Serkan made a few outstanding saves, but Rustu was not being put under pressure due to ANKARAGUCU’s lack of firepower. Lots of nice passing movements in midfield and then it petered out near the danger area.

Half time was approaching and I was contemplating going in at 0-0. So, Eski Kanka decides to go and inspect the beautiful flower arrangement in the sleek and stylish 19 Mayis Stadium men’s toilet. Bad decision ! Firstly, they didn’t have any pink (Eski’s favourite colour) flowers, and secondly, I missed the award of the penalty to Sekiztrash !!

Maniac and Rip Off were convinced it was a soft award which was flagged by the Linesman and definitely not a penalty. There was 5 minutes of arguing with the Referee and player pushing before the penalty could be taken, but it was clinically despatched by Delgado. What a sickener !

It was even worse in the 2nd half when Sekiztrash began to take control. Then Hakan Kutlu made TWO unbelievable decisions.

Off comes The Lone Ranger on the 60 minutes mark to be replaced by The Tortoise (Diawara) ….. my name !

Off comes the player most likely to score (Gokhan) 7 minutes later to be replaced by The Dwarf (Jaba) ….. my name !

The `adjectives` were flowing from me at this stage ! Where was the logic ? Am I so blind and stupid not to see it I ask ??!!

While all this was going on, the referee, Huseyin Gocek, (did he really pass the Referees Course ??!!) continued to make some bizarre decisions, needless to say, all in favour of Sekiztrash. Could things get any worse I was thinking ? Answer …… YES !!

10 minutes to go and the Referee (?), (he received 4 out of 10 from Hurriyet for his `performance`) awarded a free kick to ….. yes, you guessed, Sekiztrash, just outside the penalty box.

I mentioned earlier that players were having difficulty keeping their feet and it was quite obvious to 10,000 supporters that the Sekiztrash player slipped on the wet surface, but, of course, Mr Cocek knows better …… doesn’t he ??!!

I hesitate to use the word …. Rusvet (bribe) in the 3 officials case, just in case there are libel laws here, so, …… I won’t mention that word !!!

All credit to Tello for giving a master-class in the art of delivering a free kick. It was expertly flighted and went in off the underside of the cross-bar with Serkan stationary.

Cue ….. start emptying the Stadium, but the Police had locked us in to add insult to injury !

Eventually we escaped back to The Lacivert where we drowned our sorrows at first. However, with the entry of Oz Kanka and Smart Arse Yank Kanka the pub livened up as we celebrated Gencler’s avoidance of relegation due to Manisa losing at home.

The night ended with more booze, singing and dancing. These Anti-X boys know how to stage a party. Or was it supposed to be a wake !!??

ANKARAGUCU will play their last match in Kayseri next Saturday. Let’s hope Kayseri are a dis-spirited lot after losing the Cup Final to Gencler !!!

All the best from `Still Loyal to ANKARAGUCU`, Eski Kanka Jim