Greetings Kankas and Kankies.
Ankaragucu can consider themselves fortunate to have taken all 3 points tonight in a match where they rode their luck on numerous occasions. However, we are not complaining, but sterner tests lie ahead, and perhaps lessons will have been learned tonight, especially in the area of defence !!
Ricardo’s mistakes in recent weeks saw the return of last season’s regular goalkeeper, Korcan, and he received my Man of the Match award for a commanding performance. Bolingi was also dropped to the bench after a run of ‘x’ matches without a goal and that was another sensible decision !!
ANKARAGUCU 1 Kasimpasa 0
Team – Korcan, Sarlija, Atakan, Erdi, Pinto, Ibrahim, Kulasik, Endri, Saba, Paintsil and Badji
Substitutes – Atila, Emre, Voca, Borven and Alper
The first action of the match came in the 11th minute when Korcan pulled off the save of the match. Sarlija made an elementary mistake which allowed Kasimpasa attackers room and when the goalbound shot came in, it was tipped over the bar by Korcan.
5 minutes later and Ankaragucu went into the lead rather fortuitously. The ball was played to Saba on the right and his cross into the box was meant for Badji, but it was parried by the goalkeeper straight to his defender, Florent, who instinctively headed into the unguarded goal. Thank you very much Lady Luck !!
2 minutes later and Korcan to the rescue again to save another goal bound shot.
One minute after that and Ankaragucu scored a 2nd goal when Erdi latched onto an over-head pass. However, 3 Ankaragucu players were clearly offside when he scored !
On the half hour mark and Korcan made a crucial save when a shot came in from the right and was heading inside the post. However, he managed to divert the ball around the post for a corner.
Some neat work from Paintsil on the left approaching half time when he passed to Ibrahim just inside the box, but his shot went just past the left post.
Further chances fell to Saba and Endri who combined to send in crosses inside the 6 yard box, but both were too slow to react and the chances were gone,
Kasimpasa stepped up the pressure in the 2nd half with the Ankaragucu defence looking fragile and scary at times, but for the most part, hoofing the ball clear kept the score at 1-0.
Ankaragucu was mostly restricted to breakaways in the 2nd half with Paintsil always looking dangerous until he was substituted. Shortly after the resumption, he laid off a good ball to Ibrahim, but his effort was saved.
Half way through the 2nd half and another scare in the Ankaragucu defence when from a cut-back on the left the shot was just out.
Saba had numerous chances to put Kasimpasa under pressure from breakaways and he made some great runs down the right and left wings, but his final ball usually ended up at a Kasimpasa defender’s feet. He really must learn to look up before delivering the final pass with attackers looking for an accurate cross. Also, on the few occasions when he does have a chance to look up, he dithers and is usually dispossessed by a defender !!
In the last action of the match in time added on, Voca made a hash of his clearance inside the box and the ball went straight to a Kasimpasa attacker just outside the box. He sent in a screamer of a shot which hit the outside of the post and out with Korcan a split second away from saving it if it had been on the other side of the post !!
Relief all round at the sound of the whistle to end the match. A valuable 3 points for Ankaragucu but they will need to up their game for the crucial matches on the horizon with all the teams in the relegation zone battling it out for points.
Ankaragucu will be in action next Monday in Alanya who have lost their early season sparkle. However, it will be another chance for Ankaragucu to show their resolve and bring points back to Ankara. No doubt tonight’s win will have given them some much needed confidence.
As always, watch this space for the outcome.
All the best from Eski Kanka Jim