Greetings Kankas and Kankies.
There was no lap of honour last night at the final whistle. Ankaragucu played their 'get out of jail' card and were rather fortunate to avoid a penalty shoot-out.
ANKARAGUCU 3 Karsiyaka 2
The kankas met in The Chopin as usual. Battle Damaged Damon, Connect Steve, Phillie Jamie, Flying Dutchman Carlo, 'new boy' Berlin Kanka Karl and yours truly. At the Stadium we met-up with Yankee Kanka and Huso Kanka.
When the players emerged prior to kick-off it was a case of playing the game 'guess the player' ! Was this Ankaragucu or Ankaraspor was my first thought, but hey, Ankaraspor was playing in Tokat (where they got stuffed by the way !) and Ankaraspor don't have yellow shirts !
The Ankaraspor goalkeeper (can't spell or pronounce his name !) was in for Serkan and I will give the names of the others when I can find them. Nothing in The Hurriyet or on the Ankaragucu website this morning, so I may well do an edit tomorrow.
We did have a few Ankaragucu 'olde boys' in the starting line-up, eg, Ceyhun, El-Yasa, Metin and Murat. Also, Vassel came on when Metin went off injured and then Emre came on for Vassell when he went off injured !
So to the start, and what a start ! One up inside the first minute. It happened so quickly that it was difficult to recall as we were just settling down. A break down the right by Metin who crossed for a tap-in by Meye (I think) with the Karsiyaka defence all at sea. Volume up and wait for the avalanche of goals !!
Ermmm hello, we are playing Karsiyaka and not Muglaspor (with apologies to the good people of Mugla !). Karsiyaka steadied themselves and began to play a bit, but it was still all Ankaragucu and the 2nd goal duly arrived on the half-hour mark with a stunning piece of opportunism from Metin who swivelled in the penalty box and struck a half volley into the corner with the goalkeeper helpless.
This is it we all thought with the singing reverberating around the Stadium .... uc uc uc ..... but we fell for the sucker punch. Foot off the pedal, players thinking .... this is easy ...... and then .... with the Ankaragucu goalkeeper out of position and the defence in 'dream mode' the Karsiyaka striker lobbed the ball over the stranded goalkeeper and into the net. A schoolboy error and I'm thinking .... where is Serkan ??!!
Not to worry ..... don't panic. We are 2-1 up at half time and attacking the Gecikondu end in the 2nd half. The goals will come no probs ......wrong !
As I mentioned to the kankas prior to the match, Karsiyaka has a famous history in Turkish footie and they are not coming to Ankara to be lambs to the slaughter. So, it proved. All credit to Karsiyaka for coming out in the 2nd half and taking the game to Ankaragucu. Their footie was at times textbook stuff as they passed the ball around with Ankaragucu chasing shadows. They were in full cry and Ankaragucu was rocking.
It was no surprise therefore when they equalised. How many times has Ankaragucu been caught out by breakaways when our 'old' defenders couldn't play 'catch up'. So it was again with the cut-back and the pick your place in the goal.
2-2 and we were thinking ........ oh no, not a penalty shoot out - Karsiyaka had nothing to lose before the match and would definitely be favourites to win it.
It was nail biting stuff and with only minutes to go Karsiyaka almost snatched the winner with a shot that went just past the post with the goalkeeper beaten.
Shit ! Anxious looks all round from the kankas !!
Almost full time and from one of the few Ankaragucu attacks of the 2nd half the ball was collected by Meye just outside the penalty area. With the Karsiyaka defence backing off expecting the ball to be sent wide, he looked up and fired in a screamer of a ball to the top left hand corner with the goalkeeper clawing air.
Sighs of relief all round and let's start singing again .... cue ...... Annnkaaaaarrrrraaaagoooojoooo !!!
OK, Ankaragucu is into the Group Stage, but only just. Hikmet Bey has some serious thinking to do about how he is going to get his team playing like a TEAM and back to the basics of passing and playing for each other.
Meye had an outstanding match. Apart from his goals he was full of running and endeavour. Also, Metin had a good match in the short time he was on. El-Yasa was his usual reliable self, but Ediz had a shocker and his distribution was abysmal. Ceyhun looked a lonely figure in midfield and the sooner Barbaros and Semavi return the better !
We can only play better than this performance, and it will need to be for next Saturday's match at the Inonu Stadium.
All the best from Eski Kanka Jim
EDIT - Friday 30th October
As promised here is the team for the Cup Match (nicked from the Ankaragucu website) -
El-Yasa, Ediz, Koray and Broggi
Ceyhun, Hurriyet, Murat and Theo
Meye and Metin
Substitutes used - Vassell, Emre and Mehmet