Monday, June 28, 2010

Such is life

A few of us Kankas headed off to the Red Lion Club on Sunday night for England's match against the Germans. I was surprised to see not only a bunch of Germans there, but then TRT showed up as well. I managed to record the clip this afternoon.

The translation goes sort of like this:

Studio presenter: We (TRT) watched the match in the English Embassy. We were with my colleague Irmak Alpagut. She did reporting. There were English, French, Germans. Lets look at the report and afterwards we will talk.

Voiceover: For the most important match to date in the World Cup the Germans and English watched the "early final" together in Ankara. During the match, at times voices were raised in happiness and sadness. Especially when the goal wasn't given to the English, the English revolt was great.

Commentator: describes the non-goal

Then a couple of interviews in English

Voiceover: It wasn't just English and German fans watching the match.

Sir Eski Kanka Jimbo: talks rubbish

Reporter Irmak Alpagut: In this match who were you supporting?

Little Oz Kanka Matthew: ahhh England.

Reporter Irmak Alpagut: But they lost.

Little Oz Kanka Matthew: Such is life.

Reporter Irmak Alpagut: You say, such is life. Whıch Turkish team do you support?

Little Oz Kanka Matthew: Ah, Turkey.

Reporter Irmak Alpagut: For example, Galatasaray, Fenerbahce?

Little Oz Kanka Matthew: Ah, Genclerbirligi.

Voiceover: As the final whistle went and the World Cup ended for the English they gentlemanly congratulated the Germans.

Studio presenters: Yes, such is life. That's true


Greetings Kankas and Kankies.

As reported in The Hurriyet this morning, Ankaragucu is homing-in on finalising deals with two more foreign players.

Bellshill Kanka Nadeem and I have mentioned the Brazilian, Geovanni of Hull City, last week and it is reported that Ankaragucu is close to finalising a deal with him.

It is also reported that Danish International, Dennis Rommedahl of Ajax, has been approached with an offer which he is considering.

Rommedahl was a member of the Denmark Squad in South Africa. He is a 32 year old right winger who has had a successful stint with Ajax.

More on these possible moves when the details are known.

All the best from Eski Kanka Jim

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Synchronised Refereeing

This should be an Olympic sport. These are the Mexican referees limbering up before the Chile - Mexico match. Again, sorry to all those who can't see YouTube.

USA fans go wild

Sadly I didn't get this link until after USA! USA! USA! went down to Ghana tonight. The point of putting it on here though is to show that USAians do love football, and also to show how annoying they will be once they figure out how to win the World cup. Again, if you can't see youtube, afraid the above will be a blank.

Thursday, June 24, 2010


Greetings Kankas and Kankies.

Ankaragucu finally got their man !

It was reported in The Hurriyet today that Ugur Ucar has signed for Ankaragucu from Galatasaray.

He is a 23 year old right full back who is a product of the Galatasaray Youth Team and he has represented Turkey at Under-21 Level 20 times.

He hasn't been seen as a regular for Galatasaray in recent times because he broke his right knee-cap in 2008 and it took 15 months before he could start training again. He obviously passed the Ankaragucu medical so he should be fit to go.

No doubt he has been drafted in to replace El-Yasa and hopefully he will be another cog in the wheel to shore up the defence for the coming season.

There are other players on Ankaragucu's 'shopping list' and more on that when the details are known.

All the best from Eski Kanka Jim

Saturday, June 19, 2010


Greetings Kankas and Kankies.

There was a big spread and photo session in The Hurriyet this morning to announce the signing of Dogan Sahin from Samsunspor.

The Hurriyet is assuming that he will be Vittek's partner up front, and if that is the case, it can only be good news. I was wondering who was going to replace Vassell ?!!

Dogan Sahin comes from Tarsus in the Mersin Province and has been playing for Samsun since 2006. He has made 78 appearances and scored 25 goals. He has also represented Turkey at Under-21 Level in 2009.

Other good news this morning ......... The Hurriyet also reported that Serkan will be staying with Ankaragucu. If that is true, it will bring lots of smiles to kanka faces, starting with mine !

More details of the possible transfer of Ugur from Galatasaray will probably emerge in the next few days and our 'oracle' in Glasgow, Nadeem, is keeping an eye on that move.

Oz Kanka was worried about where the money is coming from !! Well, I say ......... why worry when we have such a great Chairman and ..... 'secret' Chairman !!!

All the best from Eski Kanka Jim

Thursday, June 17, 2010


Greetings Kankas and Kankies.

As Bellshill Kanka Nadeem mentioned in his comments yesterday, Ankaragucu has signed Michal Zewlakow from Olympiakos.

There was a big spread in The Hurriyet this morning about it and the customary photo session with Zewlakow decked out in an Ankaragucu top.

I believe this is a great signing for Ankaragucu. He is just the man to tighten up the defence which was a wee bit leaky in the latter part of last season.

He is a central defender (or stopper !!) and he comes with an impressive CV. The fact that he is 34 years old should be neither here nor there !

He began his career in Warsaw before moving to Belgium where he played for Beveren and Anderlecht. He won two league titles with Anderlecht.

He then joined Olympiakos and won three league titles and two Greek Cups with them.

He has represented Poland 95 times and recently as Captain of the National side.

So, pretty impressive stuff I would say. Look forward to seeing him in action !

There may be further good news in the coming days. It was also reported this morning that Ankaragucu has now officially bought Vittek's contract from Lille, and if all goes well, he could be playing for Ankaragucu again next season. Fingers crossed on that happening !

All the best from Eski Kanka Jim

I didn't realise, but we got a draw!

There isn't anything that Australia won't steal from News Zealand; Crowded House, Russell Crowe, cricket matches with under arm balls, but to actually claim credit for a Kiwi draw in the World Cup takes some balls.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Oz Kanka's loooong weekend

A couple of years ago I wrote that this blog was a great way of keeping me sane. A way for me to get out my frustrations following yet another Genclerbirligi loss to some crap team. In fact the blog is pretty much a psychiatrist for me. So, following last night's 4-0 loss to Germany please let me use the psychiatrist's office that is this blog to say just one thing...


Right, that's that. More on Australia's loss later on but now onto the positive part of the post. ie the German's being wonderful hosts, the British welcoming the Yanks, and the German's yet again being wonderful hosts.


Friday night for the opening of the World Cup was looking scary. Massive thunderstorms gathered over Ankara but we still made our way down to the German Embassy for a night of great beer, music, food from all over the world and some football.

Four years ago the German's hosted a wonderful open air event for the world cup that was being held in Germany. They decided it was so good that it didn't matter where the world cup was being held, the opening party was going to be at the German Embassy.... for all world cups. All I can say is that the German's deserve to hold the opening party in perpetuity. I mean, who can argue against free beer, a massive outdoor screen, people from all over the world, the mayor of Kecioren, food provided from embassy football teams (I loved the Korean food by the way - cheers guys), a DJ playing the latest hits (which of course included the latest Eurovision winning song - which I lawv), a stand with Paulener beer, invites to all the African students in Ankara, strange hats, stupid face paint, those weird vuvuzelus, Sir Eski Kanka, and security guards who help you into your taxi for the journey home. Bloody brilliant stuff.

With all those attractions it was obvious that I didn't actually see much of the first match... and the second match is a complete blank, but I do remember South Africa's first goal, and what a goal it was, and the enormous roar that went up from all of the African students. It was truly an inspiring thing to see an entire continent (well... at least the representatives there on the night) jumping up together and hugging each other in pure joy that an African team had scored a goal. I was touched.

Sure Mexico got one back to ruin what would have been a fairy tale start... but still, it was great. The rest of the night for me... bit of a blur really.


I actually got to watch some football on Saturday as Little Oz Kanka insisted that we go to the Red Lion Club to watch South Korea v Greece. We were the only ones there, apart from a party for a group of four year-olds. Little Oz and myself sat at the bar watching the football as some bloke in an unconvincing Batman outfit tried to entertain the kiddies. I have no idea why they didn't get rid of that idiot, get the big screen out, and start explaining the intricacies of the offside rule. Bugger Batman.... This is the WORLD CUP!

Above the screaming of the little darlings we did manage to watch a half decent game. ie the Korean half was decent, the Greeks were as boring as hell. Back home but back for the big match of the day: Britanya versus America.

What a great night. The Red Lion had invited a whole heap of Yanks and quite possibly the English might have been outnumbered. It was also great to see a pretty much equal number of boys and girls.

National anthem time and first up we got the dirge that is God save the Queen. Nothing against the Queen but it is a God-awful song. At least it is over in 30 seconds unlike God Save America which goes on forever and unless you have a soprano voice is impossible to sing. That didn't stop the Yanks though and they all stood, hand on heart, and made us all thankfull that the USA doesn't qualify to take part in Eurovision.

Peep, peep and England score in a couple of minutes. Much mirth from the English contingent and it looked like we could be seeing a massacre. USA! USA! USA! held on though and we all know what happened when England's goalkeeper spilled. (I quite liked Haber Turk's headline on the matter the next day. "ABD'ye 'Yesil' kart" - somewhat spoiled though with them then explaining the pun on the England goalkeeper's name - much like what I've just done now).

It was the Yanks who were obviously happier than most with the result (as well as the Welsh, Scots, Aussies etc) but all up what a great night. I even met a genuine Turkish celebrity, not that I knew it though. If you can think of someone who has won the Turkish equivilent of a BFI award and then imagine me asking them "So, what do you do?", you might have the picture. We then argued about my Turkish and stuff and how her not having a proper job at this particular moment was quite similiar to my situation. French Kanka thought I was playing the whole "meeting a genuine Turkey-wide celebrity" rather coolly (after all I am a cool sorta guy), until she realised I genuinely didn't have a clue that the person I was talking to was a genuine celebrity. Yeah, whatever.    

Sunday (The day of shame)

It all started well enough with a phone call from Spine at 11 am telling me that the breakfast he had invited the Oz Kanka family to was not going to start at 11 am thanks to the fact that he and French Kanka had only just woken up having been out clubbing with their celebrity friend (see above) until the early hours of Sunday morning. Which was lucky really as I'd completely forgotton that Little Oz Kanka had been invited to a birthday party. So off we trudged to the birthday party and I heroically refused to have a beer until the clock struck 12 midday.

Off to Spine and French Kanka's house for "breakfast" at 1 pm ... mmmm bacon and pork sausages.... and then back home and time to find where the hell was my Wallabies rugby shirt (I don't own any actual Aussie footy shirts).    

Back to the German Embassy for Australia's great chance to show that the last World Cup was not a fluke and that we are a new power to be reckoned with. I think I'm in love with the German Embassy. They had the big screen out again. Whatever beer that hadn't been consumed on Friday night was open for us all to drink, the DJ was playing cool music that I really "lawv" while the Grand Prix was being shown.

We managed to get about 15- to 20-odd Aussies to show up (a number which includes ring-ins such as Flying Dutchman Kanka, Galata-spit-saray supporter Ilker and even German Chris - whom I managed to get an Aussie flag tattoo attached to the top of his bald head). It was all high spirits, and when we almost scored in the first few minutes it was one of those nights when you think the impossible might happen.

All hope though was lost by about the 7th minute-mark when all of us Aussie supporters realised we had a crap team, playing with crap tactics, clearly coached by an absolute idiot who was playing players out of position. There is no shame in losing to Germany, but to lose like this was embarrassing. At about this stage I received a text message from Spine saying "4-6-0. Now that's a formation to be proud of!"

Not only were we seriously rubbish, the referee then decided to send off the only player who might possibly score in our remaining matches; not that we have any chance of beating Ghana or Serbia unless half of the Spanish team find out in the next couple of days that they have Australian grandmothers and decide to defect. Even then our idiot of a coach will play them out of position.

It was truely dire stuff, but luckily the magical powers of beer kicked in and we were able to thank our wonderful hosts for watching us die in front them. Big, big, big ups to the German Embassy for having us last night. We hated the football, but loved the night.

So, for us Aussies, it will be Saturday night at the Red Lion Club. Everyone is invited of course. 5pm KO. Can we rise from the dead? I doubt it. But remember there is always an Efes to cry into.       

Click on any of the photos for a bigger picture of the pain. Note in particular the red eyes of despair in the last photo as Hamish realises he has to continue waving the flag in his hand until he is dead. I'm glad I'm half-way there. 

Friday, June 11, 2010

World Cup set to go

I was surfing the internets today reading up on the latest ways the government has squandered your hard earned and was surprised to come across an article from the German Marshall Fund on footie in United States Land.

It was quite a nice piece and one little bit caught my eye:

American college students spending a semester abroad in Europe are returning with an appreciation for, and a rooting interest in, continental football.
Whilst I assume the "rooting interest" the writer states is not in the Australian sense of the term, he pretty much summed up a few of our own United Statesian Kankas.

You can check out the rest of the article here

In the meantime, the Kankas will be watching the England-USA match on Saturday 9:30 pm at the Red Lion Club. USAers are more than welcome.

Monday, June 07, 2010


Greetings Kankas and Kankies.

There I was on the balcony this morning at 7am trying to muster up the energy and enthusiasm to start another school day Monday ......... and then .....

I picked up The Hurriyet and my mood was uplifted !

They reported that Istanbul BBS and Bucaspor are both after Murat Duruer. My reaction was ....... yesssssssssssssssss !!

For those of you with short memories, some of my key expressions to describe him over the past few seasons are .....

Huffing and Puffing and doing Nuthing !
A waste of space !
Flatters to deceive !

So, my message to Istanbul BBS and Bucaspor is quite simple .... Cabuk Gel Canims !!!

Watch this space for confirmation of the move - Inshallah !

All the best from Upbeat Eski Kanka Jim

Saturday, June 05, 2010


Greetings Kankas and Kankies.

Our 'oracle' in Glasgow, Bellshill Kanka Nadeem, has already picked up on the transfer of Aydin Toscali to Ankaragucu.

He was paraded in front of the Press yesterday and there was a big spread in The Hurriyet this morning about it. A photo of him in his Ankaragucu top and scarf standing beside our 'great Chairman' Ahmet Gokcek !

One of my students told me recently that Ankaragucu had signed a deal with Puma for this season but Aydin was wearing a Lotto top. Tut tut tut !

Aydin Toscali comes from a small town in the Mugla Province called Nazilli and he made his footie debut from his town team - I think they play in the 3rd Division at the moment.

He then signed for Muglaspor and then Tarsus. Both 2nd Division teams.

He has been playing for Kayserispor for the past 5 years and was a popular player there with the fans. He won a Turkish International Cap in 2007 which indicates than he may have some potential. However, at age 29, his International days may well be over.

Anyway, welcome to Ankaragucu Aydin and let's hope he can help shore-up what was becoming a leaky defence in the last few matches last season.

On the downside, I read in The Hurriyet yesterday that El-Yasa was possibly going to Fenerbahce. Not sure if it's a done deal yet.

All the best from Eski Kanka Jim

Thursday, June 03, 2010


Greetings Kankas and Kankies.

The following is a letter from Bellshill Kanka Nadeem which he sent to me and which I want to share with you.

He has repeated some things which we have said on this Blog many times, but it is refreshing to hear his thoughts as a footie fanatik who has only been to see Ankaragucu live on one occasion.

Most of his points will take time to implement, but it is not an impossible dream.

'Some people may ask me why Ankaragucu ? Living in Scotland and a 16 hour journey away, which includes driving from Glasgow to Manchester, then flying from Manchester to Munich onto Esenboga. There isnt one answer that i could give to anyone that asks, Is it the friendly people in Ankara who make me feel so welcome, is it the passionate fans when you enter the stadium or is it that Ankaragucu are a special club that you just never know what to expect? The truth is its a mix of all mentioned.

I made my first trip to Ankara in May 2010, i took in the Ankaragucu vs Fenerbahce match at the 19 Mayis. Ankara is a wonderful city with wonderful people. The one thing that surprised me is that this football mad city has a massive club they can support yet the locals favour the Istanbul 3 ? Why is this ? Well there are many answers to this question which i am going to point out. Ankaragucu has so much potential, but we need the people at the top of the club to make changes that will take the club forward. Compared to low league British clubs, Ankaragucu are years behind in certain areas. If they can address this then the potential of the club is massive.

Ankaragucu are a club in my heart now and always will be, i will be making trips over every season to see the club play. The worrying thing is that there are people with the club on there doorstep that live in Ankara who don't go and support the club.

So that leaves me as to where can the club go forward, the areas below are where i can think the club can improve and need to improve.

Merchandise and Ankaragucu Strips - It amazes me that Ankaragucu dont have an official club shop. When i was in Ankara it was difficult to find somewhere to buy a strip. Thanks to friends Jim and Harun i managed to get what i was looking for. The club is losing so much money with not having a club superstore. When in Ankara i saw Besiktas, Fenerbahce and Galatasaray shops, but no Anakragucu. Imagine at Eid when a kid wants a poster of his favourite player, or a DVD of the past season, or even an Ankaragucu book, where does he go ? There are none available. Its vital if Ankaragucu want to challenge the Istanbul 3 that they open shops and look at the British Clubs and see what merchandise can be sold. If 20,000 Ankaragucu fans buy a strip then that's a lot of money to be made and i'm sure those numbers will grow.

Tickets - There needs to be a ticket system, again when i was over for the game against Fenerbahce we couldnt get tickets until the last minute. In the UK you can phone up and pay over the phone with your card or go down to the ticket office and pay for your ticket. There needs to be better organisation, as if people find it difficult they can just walk away.

Stadium - The 19 Mayis is a special stadium with alot of memories, but if Ankaragucu want to move on we need a new modern 30,000 seated stadium. The facilities at 19 Mayis are poor, no seat numbers, no where you can go buy food or drinks. If Ankaragucu want to attract top players, then they need a stadium that is going to impress the players as that's where there new home is going to be.

Work with the Community - Work with local schools, and the Ankara community, give kids cheap tickets and make them want to come to watch Ankaragucu, they are the future of the club and the more fans the better. If i can travel all those miles to see the club then surely locals of Ankara can be persuaded to go watch there local club.

I just hope my letter reaches the right hands and can be acted upon. If you really care about the club and want to see Anakragucu as Turkish champions one day then at least give it some consideration. Ankaragucu is more than a club.


Thanks for sharing this with us Nadeem and let's hope that it does filter through the other related Ankaragucu sites to the Ankaragucu corridors of power.

All the best from Eski Kanka Jim