Sunday, January 28, 2018

Ankaragucu 0-2 Altinordu match report!

Ankaragucu have started th second half of the season, the exact way that the started the first half. Slow, lacklustre and out of sorts both in defence and attack. A 2-0 defeat at home against Altinordu now makes it 1 win in 5 as Ankaragucu drop to 3rd as both Umraniyespor and Rizespor won at the weekend.

Team - Korcan, Erdem, Yusuf, Alihan, Mehmet, Arif, Sedat, Putsila, Kenan, Ilhan, Umut
Subs - Altay, Lukasz, Mahmut, Oguzhan, Ahmet, Mbamba, Tonia, Kehinde

Yusuf surprisingly was chosen to replace the suspended Gencer in defence and it would be a decision that would come back to haunt İsmail Kartal after another disastrous performance. Why he chose Yusuf over Lukasz only he knows, but it’s a decision along with the persistence in playing Ilhan no matter how bad he is playing that could end up costing him his job.

Ankaragucu started the match brightly in front of another good crowd at the 19 Mayis Stadium in Ankara. It was Altinordu who had the first chance through on the first minute from the edge of the box but Korcan saved comfortably.

Umut Nayir has been disappointing of late and had the perfect chance on the 4th minute as he broke through on goal, but he showed no composure as he blasted the ball into the side netting.

Kenan Özer had another great opportunity to put Ankaragucu ahead on the 12th minute after a brilliant cross from Sedat but his diving header went wide of the post when he should have done better.

Ankaragucu were made pay for their two missed chances 5 minutes later. A long ball from the back was flicked on by Mirkan who was unchallenged in the air by Alihan, the ball was passed across the face of goal and Erdogan saw his deflected shot go past Korcan to make it 1-0. Really poor defending from Ankaragucu with Alihan and Yusuf in particular to blame.

Ten minutes later Mirkan easily went past Yusuf before a beautiful low cross across the face of goal found Kerim who squared the ball to Olcan but his shot was cleared off the line. Ankaragucu were dominating possession but it was Altinordu who looked more dangerous in attack.

Arif Morkaya went close from 30 yards before Umut Nayir wasted another chance as his overhead kick went well over the bar from a nice cross from Kenan. Ankaragucu had one more chance before half time as Sedat saw his shot from the edge of th box saved after nice play from Mehmet Sak.

Half Time - Ankaragucu 0-1 Altinordu

Ankaragucu came out for the second half and piled the pressure on Altinordu as they searched for the equaliser. Erdem shot just wide from 25 yards. A minute later he put in a good cross for Ilhan who saw his headed come back off the post.

İsmail Kartal then made the substitution that killed the match for Ankaragucu. He replaced Putsila with Tonia and kept Ilhan on the pitch. He went 4-4-2 and from there Ankaragucu lost the momentum and looked like they could play all night and not score.

Tonia shot into the side netting on the 62nd minute before Altinordu hit Ankaragucu on the counter attack and finished the game off. They broke down the left hand side before a pin point cross from Mirkan whose header was brilliantly saved by Korcan, but Mirkan reacted first to the rebound as Alihan slipped and stroked the ball into the net to make it 2-0.

Ankaragucu had one more chance through Kehinde but he blasted it high and wide from about 8 yards to sum up the teams day. Altinordu leave Ankara with a deserved victory which leaves a lot of questions over th next few days with the transfer window set to close on Thursday.

It was another hugely disappointing performance from Ankaragucu, losing to a team at the lower end of the table. Sedat Agcay is the oldest player in the team and is the only one that can hold his head high. Mehmet Sak was booed for the last half and hour after another poor defensive performance. Yusuf Abdioglu shouldn’t find a place in the first team again and the front two of Ilhan and Umut need to find their shooting boots or they could find themselves on the bench.

Next up is Elazigspor at home next Sunday, a match Ankaragucu must win or they are in grave danger of missing out on the automatic promotion spots.

Saturday, January 27, 2018

Ten-man Gencler come back to defeat Konya

A great comeback from Genclerbirligi after a couple of self-imposed incidents that made it so much harder than it should have been.

Genclerbirligi 2 - 1 Konyaspor

Absolutely freezing in Ankara at the moment, which made my decision to watch the match at the Alerta Pub instead of actually going to the stadium a very wise decision indeed. It was a tiny crowd at the 19 Mayis but it was nice and lively at the Alerta.

When I say "it was lively", I meant, "it was very quiet" for the first half because the football was so boring. Konya had the majority of possession but practically no shots. We were playing some rather silly stuff, some really bad passes, some shots at goal from within our own half and other rubbish.

So, it was boring, except for the very end of the first half when a Konya player sent the ball into the box. A Konya player went up for the header but the ball was well past both him and Ahmet Oguz who had gone up as well. For some silly reason though Ahmet Oguz managed to get his arm high up in the air and handballed the damn thing.

They scored the penalty. 0 - 1. It was a cherry of disappointment to go atop the cake of boringness that was the first half.

Second half though and the things truly became lively. Within the first 60 seconds Skuletic chested down a ball in the box to the new signing Stephane Sessegnon (a Benin national who we transferred from Montpellier last week) who smashed it into the net via a Konya player.

Now we are talking... 

It was looking exciting and Gencler looked like they could take the lead at any moment when Skuletic lashed out at a Konya defender that had been pushing him around. When a said "lashed out", I meant, "lightly tapped him with his boot". Still, it was very stupid and the referee was probably right to hand him an immediate red card.

Down to 10 men and still early in the second half and Konya started the pile on the pressure... but no real shots thanks to some great defensive work. 

Then the pub erupted when the ball was put into the box, plenty of Gencler shirts in there and it went to Alper Uludag's head and in.

And that was that. A great finish. In particular I look forward to seeing more of Sessegnon, he could be just what Gencler needed. 

Great stuff.

Ozat Istifa!

EDIT: By the way. Why on earth was there seven minutes of added time?

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Erzerumspor 0-0 Ankaragucu match report!

A good Goalkeeper is worth his weight in gold, and today Korcan Celikay again showed why he is such an important player for Ankaragucu. The 30 year old former Besiktas and Sivasspor keeper was man of the match with a fantastic display in the 0-0 draw at Erzerumspor.

Team - Korcan, Erdem, Gencer, Alihan, Mehmet, Arif, Sedat, Mbamba, Ilhan, Kenan, Umut Nayir
Subs - Altay, Furkan, Lukasz, Yusuf, Mahmut, Ferhat, Ahmet, Tonia

It was a cold winters day in Erzerum and their was snow at the side of the park but the pitch was in good condition for a game of football after excellent work from the ground staff. A draw in Erzerum isn’t the worst result in the world, but it was the manner of the Ankaragucu display that was slightly concerning as the team were lucky to escape with a share of the points.

Ankaragucu had the first chance of the game after nice play from Kenan straight from kick off as he beat two players, but his weak effort from outside the box was easily held by Hakan. Seven minutes later Hakan Arslan had a shot from distance that went wide of the post for Erzerum at the other end.

Erhan Celenk was the best player on the pitch and almost gave Erzerum the lead after 15 minutes but for an excellent save from Korcan. From the resulting corner Stephan Acka headed the ball over the bar.

Erhan went close again on the 27th minute with a shot from distance but Korcan made another good save to tip the ball over for a corner.

Ankaragucu were looking out of sorts as their play was sluggish, slow and they were struggling to support Umut Nayir in attack. Kenan was the only one who looked like he was causing Erzerum any problems. On the 34th minute nice play with him and Sedat led to a chance for Ilhan but his shot was well saved by Hakan.

Just before half time Hakan produced an excellent double save from Kenan to keep the score at 0-0 in what was a pretty even first half.

The second half was all Erzerum as they piled the pressure on and looked the stronger, fitter and faster team all over the pitch. One minute into 2nd half Erhan beat two players before his shot was tipped round the post by Korcan.

Five minutes later and it was another outstanding save from Korcan from Erhan who couldn’t believe his luck as the Ankaragucu keeper was saving everything that came at him. Gokhan Karadeniz was next to be denied by Korcan as his header was straight at him.

On the 64th minute a shot from distance by Taylan was again saved by Korcan. Five minutes later Alihan had a chance at the other end but his headed went wide of the post.

It looked like it was going to be Erzerum’s day on the 77th minute as they were awarded a penalty. Mehmet Sak made a poor mistake and then Alihan committed a rash challenge in the box as the referee pointed to the penalty spot. Up stepped Hamza Younes....and yes you guessed it, Korcan made another unbelievable save.

There were a couple of late half chances from Erdem and Kenan which didn’t mount to anything. Full Time 0-0 and Ankaragucu have Korcan Celikay to thank for an incredible performance.

A poor display from Ankaragucu who missed Anton Putsila in midfield. Mbamba understandably looked unfit after missing the last 4 months through injury. It’s hard to criticise İsmail Kartal but his persistence in playing Ilhan Parlak no matter how poorly he is playing could come back and bite him in the face. Ankaragucu need some pace up top with Umut and will be hoping Tonia can be that man once fit.

Ankaragucu drop down to 2nd after Umraniyespor won 7-0 against Gaziantepspor and now lead the table on goal difference. Rizespor are now only 1 point behind after a convincing 3-0 win at Manisaspor.

It’s a home match with Altinordu next week for Ankaragucu in what will be a must win game after winning only 1 of their last 4 games.

Genclerbirligi start second half with a deserved win

The footie season is back on and us Gencler fans still have no idea whether they will be selling us season tickets for the second half of the season. Looks like collective punishment for our constant calls for coach Umit Ozat to resign.

Karabukspor 0 - 2 Genclerbirligi

Off to the Alerta Pub to join the Alkaralar and Kara Kizil groups for this mid-Saturday afternoon kick-off. About 50 Gencler fans made the trip for what is possibly our closest away match - 225 kilometres away.

The first half wasn't boring but it was pretty clear that this was a match between two struggling teams. Gencler had Aydin Karabulut back after a season away... and he looked a bit rusty... He had a chance which hit the crossbar but was lacking some of the flair we remember. I'm sure he will be back to form soon enough.

Karabuk had one hell of a chance fairly early on when Hamidou Traore had an almighty belt which a fully outstretched Hopf only just managed to get a few fingers to and send the ball out. Phew.

Second half and Gencler started to dominate. The first goal was rather strange with Skuletic on the floor seeming to lash out at the ball to get it in. Quite weird really.

With Karabuk now going full on there were lots of counterattack opportunities and it was our captain Ugur Cıftci who cleaned up.

In the end it was fairly easy. I don't think there is any chance of Karabuk not being relegated... As for us...

Friday, January 19, 2018

Erzerumspor vs Ankaragucu match preview!

Ankaragucu return to league action this Sunday after the winter break where the players enjoyed their training camp in Antalya. A tough trip to Erzerumspor awaits Ankaragucu who will be hoping to bounce back from their disappointing 2-1 defeat at Adana Demirspor in December.

Santiago Mele, Doka Madureira and Cheikhou Dieng have all left the club with no new players being singed as of yet in the January transfer window. Tonia Tisdell and Kibong Mbamba are both fit and have returned to the squad after missing out on the first have of the season due to injury. Tonia in particular will be a huge boost to the club and a key player moving into the second half of the season.

Both sides met in the first game of the season in Ankara with the scoreline 0-0, as both sides failed to take their chances with Hamza Younes and Ilhan Parlak in particular guilty of poor finishing. A lot has changed since then as both sides were playing their first competitive game which included a host of new players. Ankaragucu have went from strength to strength, blowing away anyone who stands in their way, with stunning wins against Rizespor, Eskisehirspor, Giresunspor and Umraniyespor respectively.

Erzerumspor on the other hand find themselves 1 place outside of the playoff spots and have improved as the season goes on. After a stuttering start, they are starting to find consistency and are unbeaten in their last 6 games, having drew 3 and won 3. Those results have all came against difficult opposition and Sundays match will be a real test for Ankaragucu.

Hamza Younes will again be the key player for Erzerumspor with the Tunisian striker having scored 7 goals from 15 games this season. The big striker is strong in the air and will always find himself in good positions. He can be a bit erratic at times with his finishing but will be the man that Ankaragucu will need to pay attention too. Gokhan Karadeniz is another danger man with the former Altinordu and Goztepe forward a proven scorer in the Turkish lower leagues.

Ismail Kartal will again be expected to go with the team that has repaid his faith shown in them this season. The left back position is still an area of concern with both Mehmet Sak and Ferhat Kiraz disappointing in defensive duties.

It will be interesting to see if Ismail decides to start with Tonia or if he finds himself on the bench. It will depend on his fitness levels as he has missed the last 6 months due to injury. Lets hope for another Ankaragucu win as the 2nd half to the season is going to be a tough challenge!