Greetings Kankas and Kankies.
Just when we thought that Ankaragucu would run away with the match and put it to bed, we received a wake-up call just before the half time whistle when Rize brought themselves back into the match with a rather fortuitous goal due to chaos in the Ankaragucu defence !
However, the bottom line is ......... a win and 3 valuable points to stay in the race to avoid relegation, but just how that is going to pan-out remains to be seen with a Europe wide postponement of footie.
For the time being, Turkey is playing its footie behind closed doors as a containment measure to the Corona Virus, so we were unable to watch the match in the Stadium last night.
We therefore watched the match in The Yeni Sedir Bar and I brought along my ‘medicine’, as you can see in the photo below !!! This ‘medicine’ reportedly keeps the virus at bay !!! The kankas were there – Maniac Kanka Harun, Nurer Kanka, Haluk Kanka, along with lots of other Ankaragucu fanatics.
ANKARAGUCU 2 Caykur Rizespor 1
Team – Ricardo, Atila, Pazdan, Kulusic, Kitsiou, Faty, Sedat, Lukasik, Michalak, Rodrigues and Orgill
Substitutes – Scarione and Saba
Ankaragucu went straight into attack from the whistle and almost scored in the 1st minute. An Ankaragucu free kick on the left just outside the box was taken by Michalak and the ball was heading for the top left when it took a slight deflection off the wall for a corner.
It was end to end after that for the first 15 minutes with Rize looking the more composed on the ball, but fortunately their final shots on goal were wayward.
Ankaragucu had another free kick on the right taken by Atila which was headed goalward by Orgill, but the goalkeeper got into a tangle with himself and managed to save with his feet and gather the ball.
Then on the 18th minute Ankaragucu won a corner on the right which was sent into the box and cleared by Burak (the Rize No28) straight into the goal with the goalkeeper and other defenders stunned. The early goal was much appreciated !!
4 minutes later and it was 2-0. Another corner on the right was sent in and headed clear to Michalak who was on his own just outside the box. He passed to Rodrigues on the right who swivelled and shot inside the left post to send us all wild. This was a dream start but unfortunately Ankaragucu couldn’t find the killer touch to put the match to bed.
Rize continued attacking to find a way back into the match and they almost did in the 36th minute when from a corner on the right the ball was sent goalward, but who was on the line to clear to safety ?? Orgill ......... yesssssssss !!
Rize continued to attack and it was Kulusic to the rescue as half time approached with a headed clearance in a dangerous position.
Then, with the last action before the half time whistle, Rize struck ! The defence was all at sea when a cross came in from the right to the back post. A Rize attacker headed into the centre before the ball went out of play and the unmarked Garmash headed in for an easy, if fortunate, goal, and again the Ankaragucu defence lost its concentration to gift an unnecessary goal.
Rize resumed on the front foot and Ankaragucu’s old bad habits were returning, ie, passes going astray and giving the ball away cheaply. Rize almost drew level 10 minutes after the re-start from a free kick on the right which was headed in on target, but Ricardo just managed to get his fingertips to it and tip the ball over the bar.
Half way through the 2nd half and it was Pazdan (not for the first time) to the rescue with a timely tackle to clear the danger.
Shortly after that, Sedat received a head-butt from a Rize defender in a challenge for the ball and he was stretchered off with a serious head injury and taken to hospital in an ambulance. Hopefully, he will recover, but it looked very serious !
Entering the last 15 minutes of the match and Rize continued to look dangerous as they probed for the equaliser, but Ricardo pulled off some excellent saves to deny them.
10 minutes to go and Rodrigues had two chances to seal the match for Ankaragucu but he completely missed an excellent cross from the right, and then his shot a few minutes later was past the post.
5 minutes to go and Scarione did score, but the referee adjudged that he had used his upper arm to control the ball before shooting.
Rize had one last chance but Pazdan’s challenge on the attacker distracted him and he shot over.
In time added-on, Rodrigues had another chance, but his shot was saved. Then in the last action of the match, Rodrigues was brought down unceremoniously by a Rize defender who received a Red Card for his troubles !
So, despite the 3 points, Ankaragucu stay rooted to 2nd bottom place in the league, but on the same points as the team above them, Konya, who play Fener.....spit.....bahce tonight. However, Ankaragucu is only 5 points behind Gencler in 11th position so are still in the fight to avoid the drop.
Next Saturday, Ankaragucu travel to Gaziantep KO 2pm. Gazi sit in mid-table in 9th position so it goes without saying that this is another chance for Ankaragucu to rack-up another 3 points in their season long relegation fight.
Bring it on !!
All the best from Eski Kanka Jim