Greetings Kankas and Kankies.
ANKARAGUCU 3 Eskisehir 2
A pulsating match with 5 goals and a missed penalty. Who could ask for anything else ?
Well, we could ! Nerve ends were jangling near the end, especially as it was Ankaragucu who missed the penalty !
However, it started out sedately with The Lone Ranger, ie, ME ……. in the Chopin with Battle Damaged Kanka Damon arriving late. By the way, extra points today for Damon in the Best Dressed Kanka Competition for his Italian Silk White Shirt. Those trousers were not Chinos either ……. Oh no …….. top of the range from Vakko me thinks !
Off to the Stadium and we paid the ticket touts for our Maraton Tickets (10 YTL for 2 YTL tickets) …….. we took one look at the queue outside the white box and had no hesitation ! As it turned out, it was a good decision. The Stadium was bursting at the seams, and even the Eski’s City area was full.
Lots of singing and dancing and who would have believed pre-match that this was a MUST WIN match !
Yankee Kanka and Rip Off Kanka Erman joned us and then we kicked off into the Gecikondu end.
Fairly even for the first 10 minutes and then …… surprise surprise …. Jaba won a header out on the right. Semavi, following up, crossed and there was Barbaros running in to steer it into the right hand corner with the Eskisehir ‘Giant’ goalkeeper well beaten. Damon re-named him The Giraffe ! He is probably 20 feet tall …… well, OK, at least 6 feet 7 inches !
What a start. Could we continue like we did against Kocaelispor ? Ahem ….. not quite !
The match ebbed and flowed, but everything that Eskisehir threw at Ankaragucu was being well dealt with by my Man of the Match, Boozy. Serkan and El Yasa also put in good shifts but the normally reliable Santos was having an indifferent first half. In fairness, he did buck up in the 2nd half.
The Ankaragucu players were obviously under orders from Hikmet Bey to give their all, and all credit to them for their efforts. I haven’t mentioned Ilkem before in my reports but he was an example of the never-say-die spirit in the team today.
So, guess who decided to visit the ‘boys room’ just before half time ? No prizes for correct guess ! Just as I returned on the half time whistle, a corner for Eskisehir, and following a goal mouth melee, El-Yasa conceded an own goal equaliser. Battle Damaged Kanka saw it, but it wasn’t clear at the time who got the final touch.
Half way through the second half I was thinking …..were we going to settle for a draw ? Then the unthinkable happened. A fast move out of defence by Eskisehir and … boom ……. stunned silence and disbelief ! We were 1-2 down.
Not for long though. Straight from the kick off, Ankaragucu attacked down the left wing. The ball was crossed for Mehmet who did a mini juggling trick with the ball as he transferred it from his left foot to his right, and …… whack …. in it went.
End of silence and up the volume again. By the way, the Stadium was full. The fans were even having to sit in the stairways in Maraton !
A few minutes later and the ball was swung in from the right by Semavi to the far post. In comes Inglasias to head a great goal and send the tribunes into raptures. He was so excited at scoring only his 2nd goal for Ankaragucu that he took his shirt off and received a yellow card. Not that he was worried about it !
Only 5 or 6 minutes left now and could we hold out ? You could feel the nervous tension around the Stadium !
Then, another Semavi breakaway down the right which took him into the penalty box, and just as he was about to cross, his shirt was pulled by a defender and down he went.
First the red card and then Inglasias stepped up to make it 4. Wrong ! It went screaming over the bar at about 5,000 feet …… well, maybe not, but it was bloody well too high !
What a shitter. He was pulled back into to defence and the last 5 or so minutes were spent defending desperately to protect the 3 points.
Final whistle and most of the Ankaragucu players hit the ground in exhaustion (or was it relief ?) while we were singing and dancing !
The lap of honour included a gymnastic display from Jaba and we then headed back to the Chopin to celebrate, where we were joined by Kaleci Kanka Tansu.
Still a long way to go before we can truly believe that we are safe. First, we have to negotiate the away match against Fener next Saturday. However, as Battle Damaged said, ……… if Ankaraspor can beat them ………. so can we !!
All the best from a ‘relieved’ Eski Kanka Jim
PS…… We will be watching the match next Saturday night in the Chopin Bar. KO 8pm.