Saturday, November 30, 2013

Gencler's slump continues

More tomorrow after I try to fathom the depths to which Genclerbirligi has plumbed.

(translation: report to be filed in the future when I have sobered up)

Genclerbirligi 1 - 3 Gaziantepspor

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Ankaragucu vs Bozuyukspor match preview !

Unfortunately this weeks preview isn't just about the problems on the field as we have some important news about developments off field to discuss. First though we will look ahead to the weekends must win match at Bozuyukspor. After another disappointing defeat at home last week against Alanyaspor, the visitors Ankaragucu know they must win against Bozuyukspor who are lying in the relegation zone.

Bozuyukspor have only won 2 games all season but that will count for nothing as like every other team they will be looking to cause an upset against the big boys. They narrowly lost 2-1 against Altay last week and will be no pushover. Ankaragucu need to get back to winning as they face the unthinkable of moving outside the playoff places if other results also go against them.

Its difficult to pinpoint where it has all gone wrong for Ankaragucu in the last month, the injuries of Mehmet Cakir and Umut Nayir have been a blow to the club, but its at the back where the real problems lie. Volkan Geyik, Aydin Toscali, Gurkan Alver and Aytac Oden have all been performing below the standards they are capable of. Captain Aydin has struggled since he has come into the starting line up, the goals conceded last week he was to blame for 2 of them down to lack of concentration and a moment of madness.

Its something that Fuat Aykuz needs to address on the training ground, the club can't keep losing goals like they have been and expect to win promotion to the PTT Lig. In January i expect the club to bring in some quality defenders. The midfield will also need to take some responsibility and perform better than they have shown. Selim Teber and Serhat Gulpinar are arguably the best two central midfielders in the league. If you add Mehmet Cakir, Hasan Ayaroglu and Emre Tasdemir to that the manager has a wealth of talent to chose form that other managers could only dream of.

Now to the problems off field. President Mehmet Yiginer made an announcement on Tuesday night which has created some concerns amongst the report. Its been reported that a group of Ankaragucu fans visited Bestepe the clubs training facilities to speak to the played and staff regarding the performances, things got heated. President Yiginer has now stated that he doesn't want to be involved in anything that will damage the name of Ankara and has called a General Assembly for January where its believed he will step down as chairman.

Rumours on Facebook and twitter that If Yiginer goes it will be someone close to Gokcek who takes over at the club. The dark days look like they could be set to return.

Monday, November 25, 2013

Gencler bore us to death

The honeymoon finished on Sunday for Genclerbirligi's new coach Mehmet Ozdilek as the team crashed to a disappointing loss against a whole lot of familiar faces.

Kayseri Erciyesspor 1 - 0 Genclerbirligi

It was certainly strange to be watching Erciyesspor on the telly. Cem Can was there in his normal No. 40 shirt, Yasin and Bjorn up the front, Azofeifa on the bench and of course the coach Fuat Capa. It was like watching Gencler from just a year ago.

What it wasn't was watching the Gencler of the past few weeks. From the highs of not just beating Trabzon in the last round but beating them with style, to this week being at a complete loss.

We could hardly string more than two passes together, the midfield was dangerously adrift and we hardly managed to get any shots on goal.

Gosso was injured and I'm not sure why Ozgur wasn't named but boy did we miss them.

It was truly dire stuff. Stancu up front looked tired from his recent international matches for Romania and then Ramazan injured himself when the score was still 0-0. It didn't look too bad but he did have to be replaced.

This was a match that could have gone either way as both teams were rubbish. A red card to Serkan towards the end, and the referee failing to give us a penalty didn't help matters.

I'm just glad that I was watching the match in a pub, at least I had alcohol to console me.

Sunday, November 24, 2013


Team - Gokhan, Aytac, Volkan, Aydin, Mehmet, Serhat, Selim, Kaan, Serkan, Emre, Levent

Greetings Kankas and Kankies.

I took my customary stroll through Genclik Park on my way to the Stadium to have a nostalgic look at the old (now defunct) Sahil Restaurant where we used to meet, and I may add …. full of high spirits and optimism. However, that optimism was short lived 3 hours later !!

ANKARAGUCU 2 Alanyaspor 3

I entered the Stadium at 1pm to find Gecikondu full and Maraton almost full. By kick-off time, Maraton was full and so was both Kapali sections. A truly fantastic crowd for a 2nd Division Match.

A nice touch just before KO when the 50 odd Alanya supporters in the Away End unfurled an Ankaragucu Banner much to the delight of all sections, and they were applauded of course.

I was joined by Battle Damaged Kanka Damon, Cider Kanka John, and Apple Kanka Erman together with his two friends.

Ankaragucu took to the field wearing an all white strip which had two thin strips of blue and yellow across the chest. Were they going to play like Real Madrid I was thinking ??? And the answer is …....... NO !!

Normally it is Ankaragucu coming out of the traps first, but Alanya showed from the off that they are not top of the league without good reason. Ankaragucu came into the match in fits and starts but it was Alanya showing the most urgency and fluency.

It must have been a great match for the neutrals sitting in the VIP Section, but for us long suffering Ankaragucu supporters it was frustrating to watch Ankaragucu's attacks coming to nothing in the final third.

20 minutes in and Alanya should have opened the scoring with a fast counter attack, the cut-back, but thankfully no takers.

Approaching half time and Alanya was putting Ankaragucu under extreme pressure and the defence was in panic mode as they cleared two Alanya scoring opportunities. Ankaragucu on the counter should have punished Alanya, but with the attacking move made quickly, it was halted by indecision and the chance was lost.

The inevitable goal came just before the half time whistle when Alanya broke out quickly down the right wing and when the ball was cut back in the 'classic cut back style' it was tapped in for what was really all that Alanya deserved from their first half performance.

Into the 2nd half then and Alanya took off from where they left off, ie, on the offensive. Ankaragucu was trying to get back into the match, but even with the introduction of Mehmet Cakir, the match was becoming scrappy.

Halfway through the 2nd half, and just as I was beginning to think that Alanya might start running the match down, then Ankaragucu finally made the break through.

A corner on the left, the knock-down in the box, and there was Serhat to rifle a shot into the net with the goalkeeper rooted to the spot.

Celebrations all round and everyone jumping up and down ready for the Ankaragucu onslaught...... wrong !

From the re-start Alanya went straight into attack and scored …....... aaaaaargh !!!! I was still celebrating the Ankaragucu goal and didn't see it, but Cider Kanka said it was a classic schoolboy error with the defence caught off guard. Probably they were still celebrating like me !!!

Ankaragucu finally woke up and started to play with some urgency, although I have to say that Alanya were always looking dangerous on the break.

Ten minutes to go and finally a break for Ankaragucu when Emre went down in the box under a challenge and a definite penalty. Levent made no mistake.

Approaching the final whistle and we were still willing Ankaragucu on to seal a memorable win because a 2-2 score is not what we were looking for.

Then in the last attack of the match, an Alanya player went down in the box on the left (theatrically in my view, albeit that it was quite far away) and the referee unbelievably pointed to the spot.

Stunned silence all round, but the Alanya No9 made no mistake.

Gutted is not the word I would use. Perhaps something stronger which I can't say here !!!

Ankaragucu is now left with a mountain to climb if they are to escape from the Red League. Hopefully they won't come up against teams like Alanya in the run up to the end, and all we can do now is realistically think about making the Play-Offs !!!

Off we went to The Chopin to team up with Oz Kanka Chris who was also suffering the defeat of Genclerbirligi at the hands of Erciyes. His report will not make good reading either !!!

All the best from a very disappointed Eski Kanka Jim

PS ….. me thinks it's going to be a long and effin frustrating winter !!!

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Ankaragucu vs Alanyaspor match preview !

Sundays match between Ankaragucu vs Alanyaspor is a top of the table clash which can only be described as a must win match for Ankaragucu. The visitors Alanyaspor sit top of the table 5 points ahead of Ankaragucu going into this match. Four wins in a row have saw Alanyaspor overtake Ankaragucu at the top of the league while the hosts haven't won in their last four games.

Fuat Aykuz was happy with the way the team played last week at Ofspor and claimed the team were unlucky not to win the game after the Ofspor goal was said to be offside. Ankaragucu will need to up their game and get back to winning. With manager Hayati Soldas gone after the fans calling for his resignation, there are no more excuses. Despite the team being young, they have played together for a long time. The teams they are coming up against are of a poor standard, and if Ankaragucu want to be taken seriously they need to start showing the kind of form that the leaders Alanyaspor are showing.

The biggest concern is the defence, week after week the goals the team concede are what you would expect to see at amateur level. That is something that the manager will need to address in training. The last time Alanyaspor lost in the league was at Ofspor who beat them 1-0. Ankaragucu have the quality to win this match, and with the home support behind them they need to win this match for the fans.

The match will kick off at 1330 on Sunday at the 19 Mayis stadium. For those who can't make the match the game will be shown live on Baskent TV. Its difficult to predict a result with Ankaragucu at the moment but they will need to show a huge improvement if they are to win this match.

Lets hope come Sunday night we are cheering an Ankaragucu win !

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Ankaragucu 1-1 Ofspor match report !

Ankaragucu are in great danger of throwing their title hopes away after yet another match without a win.  A 1-1 draw at Ofspor now makes it 4 matches in all competitions without a win. In fact the last match Ankaragucu won was when i was there for the 5-0 win over Pazarspor. Who would have thought that day that Hayati Soldas would be gone as coach and Ankaragucu would be 5 points behind Alanyaspor within the next 3 league games ?

Team - Gokhan Akkan. Aytac Oden, Volkan Geyik, Aydin Toscali, Onur Atasayer, Kaan Kanak, Serhat Gulpinar, Serkan Sirin, Selim Teber, Emre Tasdemir, Levent Kale

Subs - Bayram Olgun, Metin Aydin, Mert Erdogan, Mehmet Tasci, Mert Pamukkaya, Hasan Ayaroglu,  Harun Aydin

New coach Fuat Aykiz brought Levent Kale back into the starting line up alongside Onur Atasayer, but it wasn't enough as Ankaragucu couldn't hold onto a 1-0 lead to take 3 points against Ofspor. The first half ended 0-0 with no real updates due to Kardinga TV not being able to show the game due to technical problems.

Into the second half and Ankaragucu took the lead through an own goal from Abdurrahman Cubukcu on the 62 minute mark. It looked like Ankaragucu were heading for the win but for a late equaliser from Mertcan Aktas and put a dent on Ankaragucu's title dreams.

Alanyaspor won 3-0 at home against Altay to go 5 points clear at the top, they are now showing they are real title contenders and will now travel to Ankara next Sunday for the match against Ankaragucu. A defeat for Ankaragucu will all but kill off their title hopes as early as November.

Fuat Aykuz will now go back to the drawing board and see how he can improve the defence while the team look to get back to scoring goals. The injury of Umut Nayir and fitness of Mehmet Cakir has took some sting out of the Ankaragucu team, but they need to get back to winning ways.

Fuat Aykuz the new Ankaragucu manager !

Fuat Aykuz has been appointed as the new manager of Ankaragucu. He has been promoted from the youth team and takes over from Hayati Soldas who resigned earlier this week. His first task will be tomorrow as the side take on Ofspor in the league.

When i was in Ankara last month i met Mr Aykuz who was taking training sessions for the youth team. Although i don't know much about him, he is well respected within the club and knows the club inside out. He will be familiar with the players with many of them having played under him at youth level.

The new manager is also a former player of the club and it will be interesting to see what style of football he plays. Lets hope its 3 points tomorrow for his first game in charge of the club.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Ankaragucu vs Ofspor match preview !

Ankaragucu travel to the province of Trabzon on Sunday as they come up against Ofspor in what will be a tough match. The club will be hoping be hoping to put an end to the 3 match losing streak which has saw them drop to 3rd in the League. The last two games have not only ben disappointing in terms of the result, but also the performance. Ankaragucu for the last couple of years have been known for playing good football despite the poor results. New coach Hayati Soldas has come under huge pressure as the style of football and negative tactics is leaving the fans calling for his dismissal.

Losing at home to Tepecikspor last weekend was a blow to the clubs title hopes, but it is up to them to come back stronger and prove they are capable of winning this league. As results have shown anyone is capable of beating anyone in this division. Although Ankaragucu are missing key players Selim Teber, Orhan Evci and Umut Nayir they still have a big enough squad to win these games. With Altinordu and Alanyaspor both on a winning run it is important that Ankaragucu don't lose ground on the top 2.

It seems that the Manager Hayati Soldas is still with the club after reports last week claiming he had resigned. It will be interesting to see how he lines the team up against Ofspor and if he has listened to the fans shouts for Attacking positive football. The decision to play Gurkan Alver in midfield last weekend instead of Mert Erdogan was an example of these negative tactics. Mert an accomplished midfielder who played for the club in the Super Lig, while Gurkan is a no nonsense centre half who is known for not being good on the ball. Added to that Gurkan was playing in the middle of the park with Serhat Gulpinar who is also a defensive midfielder. Then we have the decision to drop our on form striker Levent Kale for the unfit Ibrahim Sahin ??

Ofspor are sitting just outside the playoff places and drew 2-2 at Altay last weekend, they also beat Alanyaspor 1-0 a couple of weeks ago and have shown they are a difficult side to beat. Ankaragucu still have enough quality to go and win this game. They need to be tight at the back, as the two goals last week conceded were goals you would expect to see at Junior football level. Youngsters Hasan and Emre are two of the most promising young players outside the Super Lig, they have to start making the right decisions though and stay involved in the game.

Kick off will be at 1330 on Sunday and the game will be live online through a Trabzon TV Chanel. Im prediction a 1-1 draw, i hope we can get the 3 points buy i just dont see the manager changing his decisions or tactics.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Terrible start, brilliant finish

My voice is certainly worn out after one hell of a match that saw incompetence, show-off fancy boy stuff, a dodgy penalty, a referee who sprayed us with yellow cards, as straight red towards the end to a Trabzon player... and last but no least a brilliant come back from two-nil down.

Genclerbirligi 3 - 2 Trabzonspor
Mark and Steve and Carl and Carlo and Saadet and Joanne
and Matthew and Chris and Steph. 

A decent crowd with eight of us at the Beer Bus this afternoon where we found the bar staff were wiping the floors and chairs. It seems that a huge crowd of Trabzon supporters had just left. Poor buggers had to go to the stadium more than an hour and a half before kick-off to guarantee themselves a seat. Us Gencler fans rock up 20 minutes before the start and still manage to get a decent spot.

Gencler have had a couple of good weeks but even the most optimistic of us thought Trabzon would be too good for us. This was confirmed just 30 seconds in when Ugur sent a back pass to Ramazan. The pass was a little bit harder than it should have been and Ramazan slipped over when trying to get to it. Ramazan thought it was going out and ignored it but a Trabzon player rightly stormed in and from an acute angle got it into the back of the net.

Stunned silence from the Gencler crowd. Absolutely embarrassing for Ramazan and head in hands time for me. Remember this was 30 seconds in and we were already one nil down.

This was surely going to be an absolute disaster but while the Gencler players didn't exactly pick up the pace (the game had hardly started at this stage) but we played some decent football. We had control and balls were going through to our strikers. No goal though. Even though at one stage a great shot from Ugur appeared to go in... it didn't though.

The referee was starting to be annoying with decisions starting to go Trabzon's way. Then Ugur got himself involved again when he made a somewhat silly tackle on a Trabzon player in the box. Yep. A penalty. At the time I thought it was very harsh decision, as did the Gencler fans and the players. The referee started handing cards to Gencler players for talking too much and this only got the fans angrier.

They scored and so after 34 minutes Trabzon were two up.

Looking back at a replay now on the Digiturk website I think it was probably a correct decision to give the penalty.

The thing is though it got our fans to sing louder and the players to really put their heart into what was already a pretty good performance. And so our just reward came deep into added on time of the first half with Zec getting a header through to Stancu. Stancu managed to get around former Gencler player Aykut and then rounded the Trabzon keeper.

Down 2-1 at half-time but I was still pretty hopeful we could at least get the draw. We were by far the better team of the first half and our players knew it.

Second half and it was pretty much the same. Trabzon had a few goes but in general we were the team actually going for it.

Then came the reward after some extremely loud chanting from our supporters.

Sixty-seventh minute and a free kick was sent in to the box by Jimmy. Onto the head of Ahmet Calik and in. That was one of the most deserved goals I've seen. We had been so dominant and from such a horrible start.        

The players weren't having any of my "moral victory" stuff, they wanted real victory and it was great to see such passion on the field.

80 minutes in and Trabzon were attacking. A shot at goal was made and one of our players managed to give it an almighty hoof from inside the box to clear it. Thing is, Jimmy decided that this hoof was a pass and ran after it. With two Trabzon players on him Jimmy managed to control the ball, keep running, and then getting it past the keeper. Fantastic stuff.

And that was that. We had out-sung
the large Trabzon fan groups. We had played vastly superior football. We were the better team by far. That make three league victories in a row. Not bad really

By the way I approve of Jimmy's new beard!

Hayati Soldas resigns !

Ankaragucu manager Hayati Soldas has today resigned from his position at the club. After only taking over the club in the summer from Mustafa Kaplan he leaves the club in 3rd place in the league after another poor performance amd defeat yesterday.

Although the club are in the playoff places the fans werent happy at the negative style of football the team was playing and team selections. Three defeats this season have all came against Istanbul teams at the foot of the table.

We now await who will take over the reigns with former Ankaragucu managers Mustafa Kaplan, Hakan Kutlu and Hikmet Karaman all memtioned.

Saturday, November 09, 2013


Greetings Kankas and Kankies.

Bellshill Kanka Nadeem's Flag lives on .............

This is the sight today in Gecikondu when Ozan and his family proudly showed off the Scotland Saltire which was given to them 2 weeks ago by Nadeem........

The connection had been made and it will never be broken.

We met Ozan and his family outside the Stadium at the end of the match and they send their best wishes to Nadeem and all the Kanka Group members.

All the best from Eski Kanka Jim


Greetings Kankas and Kankies.

Ankaragucu received a reality check today from an average performing Tepecikspor team. Not only that ….......... we all did !!!

ANKARAGUCU 1 Tepecikspor 2

As I've continually said last season, and this, if you dare under-estimate any of the teams in the PTT and 2nd leagues then you will be punished.

However, that was not the only reason for today's abysmal performance and result. The Ankaragucu team simply didn't perform !

Rewind ….... The Kankas met in the Stadium ….... Battle Damaged Kanka Damon, Cider Kanka John, Apple Kanka Erman and a guest appearance from 'new kid on the block' Tasmanian Devil Kanka Robbie, who we hope will be a regular supporter of the Kanka Group.

5 minutes to go to KO and a full Gecikondu and almost full Maraton is serenading us …....... as usual. However, a glance at the 'away end' and I could only see 15 policemen seated …... and …... zero Tepecik punters !!!

The match kicked-off with Ankaragucu on full attack mode, and it was about 10 minutes in before we saw Gokhan in action to receive a back-pass. Then, after Tepecik had 'weathered the storm' with their impressive defence, which by the way produced nothing in the way of any danger for their goalkeeper, they started to come into the match and showed that they were not here to make up the numbers !

15 minutes in and Tepecik almost took the lead when a cross came in from the left to an unmarked attacker on the back post, but he blasted over. Sighs of relief all round !

It was end-to-end for the remainder of the half with Ankaragucu having the best chance of the match so far almost on the half time whistle. A great goal-bound shot was tipped over the bar by the Tepecik goalie for the save of the match.

We were just settling down after the re-start when Tepecik scored. Unfortunately, it happened so quick that none of us saw the incident which occurred from an Ankaragucu defensive lapse allowing the Tepecik attacker free on a one-on-one situation with Gokhan. He made no mistake by despatching the ball into the corner to stun us all into silence !

The equaliser almost came 10 minutes later when Ankaragucu's Man of the Match, Emre, fired in a powerful shot from just outside the box which the keeper did well to dive full length and turn the ball round the post for a corner.

3 minutes later the 'NON-Man of the Match' Ibrahim Sahin missed a sitter. From a free kick with an open goal at his mercy he elected to blast it into Gecikondu, when it was the easiest thing in the world to tap in. Even the Hibs front line without a goal in FOUR matches could have scored !!!!

The equaliser finally arrived on the 63rd minute but it was not a goal which will live long in the memories of Ankaragucu's finest ! In fact, it will probably rate as one of the most unforgettable !

It was a scrappy goal deriving from some scrappy play which was despatched by Emre (I think via a deflection). OK, it was a goal, and Emre will no doubt claim it, but a rather fortunate equaliser which had the desired effect of producing some sustained Ankaragucu pressure.

Unfortunately, the pressure wasn't sustained long enough and Ankaragucu looked to be losing their way and being tied up in knots by some impressive defending by Tepecik.

10 minutes to go and ….......... goal !!! Levent scored …....didn't he ? No !!! The ball hit the post and bounced out straight into the goalie's grateful arms ! Aaaaargh ….... it was a goal all the way and Levent could so easily have turned the match. Which brings me to another point …. why didn't he start the match ? Why was he only brought on half way through the 2nd half when it was quite obvious, even to us kankas, that Sahin was a waste of space ??!! The Coach (if he is still the Coach next week) needs to answer that question !

5 minutes to go and we are all resigned to a 1-1 draw and then …...... surprise surprise ….. the defence had another attack of being in dreamland. With Ankaragucu pressing forward looking for a winner, they forgot about the basics ….... ie, keep the back door closed !!!

A breakaway …..... and with the Ankaragucu defence posted missing …..... it was all too easy for the Tepecik forwards to tear what was left of it to shreds and slot in the winner.

What a sickner. Cue …... calls for the head of the Coach. Could well be a new Coach for the next home match me thinks !

Into time added on and time enough for Gurkan to receive a yellow and a 2nd yellow. I doubt if he'll be missed in defence next week !!!

So, as I said …..... the players have been brought back down to earth and they now have to think long and hard about the long slog ahead till May 2014.

First up is the away match against Ofspor next week and ….... dare I say it …...... a MUST WIN match !

All the best from Eski Kanka Jim

Thursday, November 07, 2013

Ankaragucu vs Tepecikspor match preview !

Ankaragucu will be hoping to get back to winning ways this Saturday as they host another of the Istanbul teams this time Tepicikspor. After last weeks disappointing defeat at Bayrampasa, coach Hayati Soldas knows Ankaragucu must take the 3 points with the likes of Altinordu, Alanyaspor and Bandirmaspor all breathing down our neck.

I managed to watch the highlights of last weeks game and would say that was our worst performance of the season. We created very little with Mehmet Cakir having the only decent chance, we looked very weak at the back and a better side would have punished us more. The team selection with Mert, Emre and Aydin all dropped or rested after impressing against Sivas and Pazarspor.

Tepecikspor are sitting mid table and drew 0-0 with Altay last week. They were hammered 5-1 by Alanyaspor a few weeks back but as results have shown anyone is capable of beating anone in this league.

Selim Teber will be missing again through injury which is a blow with him being one of the clubs top performers this season. Mehmet Cakir and Aydin Toscali should feature with them closer to full fitness. Emre Tasdemir should also be restored to the starting line up with the youngster also in top form.

The game will take place at 1330 this Saturday at the 19 Mayis Stadium and will also be shown live on Baskent TV if anyone cant make the match.

Monday, November 04, 2013

Başbakan Ramazan

"Stancu just doesn't seem good enough up front," said @spinesideburn at the Beer Bus before Monday night's Genclerbirligi v Eskisehirspor match. So little faith did Steve have that he didn't even bother to actually come to game, preferring to curl up on the sofa at home. Needless to say Stancu scored two top goals tonight.

Genclerbirligi 2 - 0 Eskisehir

I had no idea that Swedish people were so proud of their Viking history. Apparently the prime minister sends out a congratulatory note to all Swedes on the date considered to be the anniversary of the "Stuffing of Jorvik" (York) from the year 950 or something. Such a violent history makes it all the more strange that all Swedes are given a certificate on graduation from high school that qualifies them to be election monitors in any third world country, including Scotland! No wonder democracy is doing so well.
The Swedes

Anyway, that is what I think I heard from the four Swedish blokes who showed up at the Beer Bus, along with @spinesideburn, for pre-match discussions.

Indian summer weather, and a fair bit of pollution, meant that it certainly wasn't cold at the 19 Mayis Stadium for the Monday night 8pm KO. Which brings me to my next rant.

When I was a kiddy football matches kicked off at 3pm on a Sunday. ALL football matches kicked off at 3pm on a Sunday. A wonderful time for a footy match. The weather was always good at 3pm. The meat pies were warm and the cheer leaders ugly.  
I know we can't go back to those good ole days. Television determines everything and I accept that we are going to have matches on a Friday night, or a Monday night.

But now I get pissed off and angry because I can't for the life of me figure out why the TFF would schedule three, 3, uç, tre, THREE matches for a Monday night 8pm kick off.

Why couldn't the TFF have had our match on Saturday or Sunday? It isn't as if our Monday night match would have got many viewers on the telly. The Gencler v Eskisehir match is the closest we have to a derby nowadays (a bit over an hour away on the high speed train). So why, why, make us play on a Monday night making it so difficult for both home and especially away fans to get to the stadium?

Having said that there was a decent Eskisehir crowd tonight. Mainly students it looked like.

But the Eskisehir team didn't really show up.

Gencler did though and it wasn't long until Stancu had us 1-0 up with a greatly strike in the 7th minute.

And then we played... er... not too badly. This was a new Gencler. Grosso was great in midfield. We were making decent attacks, our defence was holding nicely, Ramazan in goal had little to do.

Half-time and none of us could see Eskisehir winning it. Thing was that before the match you could have got very good odds on Eskisehir absolutely thrashing us.

Second half and again Genclerbirligi were in control. We sang and sang and the team seemed to lift. Then the second came with Stancu again simply smashing it.      
From then on Gencler merely played counter-attacking football while Eskisehir desperately tried to get something back.

They couldn't.

I can't really explain it. We seem to be playing like a decent team. Is it all because of the new coach "Şifo" Mehmet?

I don't care. In the end the Swedes and me left the stadium happy having seen another violent massacre... er... football victory.

Steve later texted me to say that he had had a lovely snooze. Bless.

Sunday, November 03, 2013

Ankaragucu 0-1 Bayrampasa match report !

Ankaragucu surprisingly lost 1-0 in Istanbul this afternoon against struggling Bayrampasa. A disappointing result for the club especially as Bayrampasa had only won 1 game all season before today. The lead at the top is now cut to 2 points after Alanyaspor won 4-0 at home to Bozuyukspor and now leapfrog Bandirmaspor into second place. Bandirma lost 3-0 at Nazilli which just shows anyone can beat anyone in this league.

Team - Gokhan Akkan, Orhan Evci, Gurkan Alver, Volkan Geyik, Onur Atasayer, Kaan Kanak, Harun Aydin, Serhat Gulpinar, Mehmet Cakir, Levent Kale, Umut Nayir

Subs - Bayram Olgun, Aydin Toscali, Metin Aydin, Batuhan Akyildiz, Emre Tasdemir, Mehmet Tasci, Ibrahim Sahin

The main talking point tonight is the future of Ankaragucu coach Hayati Soldas, now its easy to say Ankaragucu are top of the league so why are the fans questioning the manager ? First of all if Ankaragucu are to win this league they need to start taking points of the teams at the bottom of the table. The two defeats this season have came against Istanbul Gungorenspor and Bayrampasa who are two of the weakest sides in the league. Secondly Hayati bey has had the largest budget of all the teams in this league, he can call on the likes of Aydin Toscali, Mehmet Cakir, Serhat Gulpinar and Selim Teber who were all Super Lig players not long ago.

Today Hayati again dropped Mert Erdogan from the team in place of Harun Aydin. Mert may split opinions with the Ankaragucu fans but there is no doubting his quality and to drop him the player taking his place must be of a higher standard, unfortunately at the moment that is not the case with Harun. Young Emre Tasdemir in the last two matches has scored 2 goals and shown what a fantastic talent he is, yet today he was on the bench and played no part. Captain Aydin Toscali was back on the bench as Hayati stuck with Gurkan and Volkan who have looked very shaky at the back this season.

I spoke to many Ankaragucu fans last week and most of them are of the opinion that last season the football was excellent but the results were poor, this season the football is poor but the results are good. Ankaragucu need to find a balance between playing good football and getting the results required to win this championship. The club cant afford to pay the kind of wages they are paying in Lig 2 and not win promotion.

Bayrampasa scored after only 9 minutes today thanks to Gokhan Kilinc, and that was the way the score finished. Going by the updates on facebook and twitter it was a poor performance from Ankaragucu. Next up is a home match with Tepecikspor who are another of the sides struggling at the foot of the table. Its a must win for Ankaragucu with Alanyaspor starting to show some form.

Match preview of the Tepecikspor on the blog during the week....

Friday, November 01, 2013

Ankaragucu vs Bayrampasa match preview !

Ankaragucu travel to Istanbul on Sunday as they face struggling Bayrampasa. Afterna fantastic 5-0 win over Pazarspor last week and a spirited 3-1 extra time defeat at Sivasspor midweek, the Ankara side will go into the game high on confidence.

Bayrampasa are only 1 place outside the relegation zone and lost 4-0 at Altay last week. They were also knocked out of the Turkish cup to Fethiyespor 2-1 after extra time midweek. They have however drawn against both Alanyaspor and Bandirmaspor this season.

Ankaragucu coach Hayati Soldas again has the task of chosing his best 11, with Serhat Gulpinar, Mert Erdogan, Aydin Toscali, Mehmet Cakir, Emre Tasdemir and Veli Torun all back from injury the coach has good squad of players to chose from.

Young Emre Tasdemir has shown in the last 2 games why a host of Super Lig teams were after his signature. The youngster has the technique, pace and skill that all good modern wingers need these days. Aydin Toscali is also a big player forthe team with his experience helping to settle the team at the back.

Another tough game but one which Ankaragucu should come away with 3 points and retain there lead at the top.Game kicks off at 1330 Turkish Time and you can get all the updates live on the official Round Ball in Ankara facebook page.