Ankaragücü kicked off their League campaign with a defeat at home against newly promoted Erzerumspor and it was much of the same as last season with poor defending and wasteful in the final 3rd. Today’s result and performance however lies with Manager Fuad Capa who made a string of strange decisions that we will discuss in the match report.
Team - Korcan, Cebrail, Sarlija, Kulusic, Atilla, Pazdan, Lukasik, Kitsiou, Adzic, Ilhan, Bolingi
Subs - Freidrich, Orkan, Murat, Berke, Paintsil, Pinto. Mucahit, Saba, Ender, Erdi
When the team was announced, there were a lot of anger and disappointment from the Ankaragücü fans. Nine new signings and Ilhan Parlak again found himself starting, while Korcan somehow started ahead of Friedrch in goals. Then you had Cebrail starting at right back, while Pazdan was in midfield which was the strangest decision of them all. So many players out of position, while a number of players who shouldn’t even be at the club found a place in the starting line up.
Ankaragücü had the first chance of the game after 10 minutes when Ilhan crossed for Sarlija who saw his shot cleared off the line for a corner.
Four minutes later Atilla saw his free kick from a tight angle saved by Farnolle who was making his debut after signing from Yani Malatyaspor.
A few minutes later and Farnolle was called into action again. A long ball from Kulusic was brought down by Bolingi who passed to Adzic. The Serbian then passed the ball inside for Lukasik who saw his shot deflected then brilliantly saved by Farnolle.
Erzerumspor had to wait until the 25th minute for their first chance as Rashad shot form a tight angle but Korcan easily saved.
Erzerumspor started to take control of the game and Arvidas headed just over after Rashad had dispossessed Kulusic. Just before half time Arvidas went close again, this time his shot hit the top of the bar and went over.
Half Time 0-0
A minute into the second half Korcan made a howler from a passback which almost led to a goal, but Rashad Muhammad saw his shot cleared off the line by Kulusic.
The opening goal came on the 61st minute when Kitsiou played in an excellent cross for Bolingi at the back post who put the ball into the back of the net to score on his debut and give Ankaragücü the lead. Minutes later Fiat Capa made another ridiculous decision when he took Kitsiou off and Cebrail kept his place at Right Back.
Erzerumspor had the ball in the back of the net 5 minutes later but the goal was disallowed due to a foul on Ilhan.
Ankaragücü failed to learn their lesson though and Sissoko beat Pinto down the left hand side before finding a team mate whose cross into the box was headed into the net by substitute Oltan to make it 1-1. It was terrible defending from Kulusic and Cebrail who left Oltan unmarked, and Korcan should have saved as it was straight at him.
Only 4 minutes later Erzerumspor took the lead with an identical goal down the right hand side. Sissoko this time beat Cebrail and crossed for Oltan again who headed past Korcan while unmarked for a 2nd time.
Ankaragücü did have a couple of chances through Kulusic and Sarlija late on but neither could finish their chance. A defeat on opening day and a lot of angry Ankaragücü fans who are calling for the termination of Kulusic, Ilhan, Cebrail and Korcan contracts.
The team have 2 weeks to prepare for their next match with Sivasspor. Fatih Mert and the management team need to get quality reinforcements in before then. Let’s see what the next few weeks bring.