Sunday, March 21, 2021

Trabzonspor 4-1 Ankaragücü match report


The 4-1 scoreline flattered Trabzonspor who were the better side and deserved the 3 points, but Ankaragücü could easily have come away with a point if it hadn’t been for a couple of costly errors and the brilliant Ugurcan in the Trabzonspor goal.

Team - Freidrich, Pinto, Sarlija, Kulusic, Atilla, Ibrahim, Endri, Paintsil, Geraldo, Saba, Borven

Subs - Korcan, Badji, Assane, Emre, Orkan, Pazdan, Erdi, Ali Kaan, Voca

Ankaragücü were dealt a blow when Alper and Kitsiou were both ruled out due to injury. Both players have been key to the recent good form. Thiago Pinto came in at right back which is always difficult for a left footed player as it effects the balance. While Paintsil came in for Alper. For me that was the first mistake Karaman has made as it left the team exposed in midfield and too open.

As I predicted Ekuban and Djaniny caused Ankaragücü problems all afternoon and took only 7 minutes to give Trabzonspor the lead. Djaniny saw his shot saved by Freidrich but it was parried into the path of Ekuban who had a tap in to make it 1-0.

It took Ankaragücü 20 minutes to equalise and it came after Geraldo was founded in the box and the referee awarded a penalty. Up stepped Ibrahim to make it 1-1.

Only 2 minutes later the Djaniny and Ekuban duo combined again as the later turned Kulusic in the box and finished past Freidrich to make it 2-1.

A horrible 5 minute period for Ankaragücü saw Trabzonspor go 3-1 up this time Sarlija was dispossessed on the half way line by Djaniny, who ran through on goal before rounding Freidrich and Atilla before putting the ball in the net. 

Djaniny nearly scored again after an excellent ball from the brilliant Bakesetas but Freidrich made a good save.

Just before half time Ugurcan made a brilliant double save from Saba and Endri after nice play from Geraldo. The save form Endri in particular really was top class.

Half Time 3-1

Into second half and it was all Ugurcan. First up was a good save from Saba, then he made a good save from Badji who should have done better.

Borven had a chance on the 74th minute but he blasted his shot wide and then 5 minutes later a great ball in from Geraldo for Badji but the big striker headed wide.

Edgar Le made sure of the 3 points for Trabzonspor in the final minute after a mistake from Korcan to make it 4-1. As said a deserved win for Trabzonspor who are a good side but Ankaragücü played well for 70 minutes of the game. 

Next up is a huge game against Antalyaspor next Sunday which is a must win (for you Miguel) we will have the preview midweek.

Saturday, March 20, 2021




Greetings Kankas and Kankies.


There is no denying Gencler’s fighting spirit   !!   After 11 matches without a win, they have now managed 2 consecutive wins and move up one place off the bottom of the league above Denizlispor, at least until tomorrow.


GENCLERBIRLIGI           2             Kasimpasa           1


Team – Nordfeldt, Johanssen, Arda, Mustafa, Pehlivan, Soner, Piris, Candeias, Yildirm, Ayite and Lima


Substitutes – Yilmaz, Diego, Mugni and Polomat


It was all Kasimpasa in the 1st half with Gencler only having one serious shot on goal.


Kasimpasa’s first chance came in the 10th minute when a sweeping move sent the Gencler defence scurrying back, but the final effort was just past the post.


10 minutes later and it was Nordfeldt to the rescue when he saved a goal bound header from a corner.


Gencler’s first chance came 3 minutes later but Soner’s shot was just past the post.


Kasimpasa had 2 more good chances before the half time whistle, but both were saved by Nordfeldt.


Kasimpasa was weaving pretty patterns all over the field in the 1st half with 72% possession but nothing to seriously trouble Nordfeldt.


Into the 2nd half and again Nordfeldt made a great save 6 minutes in with a point blank save   !


Then 8 minutes later, against the run of play, Gencler struck.   A breakaway on the right and Candeias crossed for Yilmaz to nip in between 2 defenders and bullet a shot into the top right.


Kasimpasa wasn’t finished and they equalised in the 65th minute when they had an attack down the left.   The cross came in, which eluded everyone in the box, but Yusef was unmarked on the back post and he shot inside the left post for an excellent predator’s goal.


That was it ........ I thought.     However, Gencler produced the goal of the match when they attacked down the left.    The cut-back came in from the goal line and Yilmaz was there to cheekily back-heel the ball inside the left post to deceive everyone ...... and the goalkeeper.


That was it .......... I thought.    Still one more piece of action when Pehlivan tripped an attacker in the box with only 10 minutes to go.    The referee pointed immediately to the penalty spot, but there was a VAR moment before his decision was confirmed.


Hajradino sent his kick to the right which Nordfeldt parried, and his shot on the rebound was blasted over the bar  !!!


So, even with only 29% possession and only 2 shots on target, Gencler took all 3 points, which leaves the fight in the relegation zone even more intense.


Next up is an away match against Alanya on Sunday 4th April and another chance for Gencler to escape from the relegation zone.


As always, watch this space for the outcome.


All the best from Eski Kanka Jim

Thursday, March 18, 2021

Trabzonspor vs Ankaragucu match preview!


Saturday May 2010 was the last time Ankaragucu took all 3 points against Trabzonspor thanks to a Robert Vittek goal and a 1-0 win for Ankaragucu. Vittek would then go on to sign for Trabzonspor the next season after all the financial problems caused by the Gokcek family. 

If you had asked any Ankaragucu fan 2 months ago if the team could win at Trabzonspor they would likely have laughed. Since then Hikmet Karaman has come in and made it 3 wins 2 draws and 1 defeat in his first 6 games since returning to the club. Even more impressive is that the 3 wins came against Galatasaray, Fatih Karagumruk and Goztepe. 

Its not just the performances on the park that have impressed everyone under Karaman. You just need to follow the clubs Twitter page or his Instagram page and you will see the work that goes in off the field, even things like Marketing, Social Media and promoting the official club shop. 

Hikmet Karaman has breathed life back into Ankaragucu. A club that was down and wounded with players suffering with fitness and confidence. 

The first thing Karaman has changed in the team as he looks to guide Ankaragucu to safety, is the defence and how the team defend .Ankaragucu were leaking goals almost every match. But they now look more solid and organised with Sarlija and Kulusic forming a strong partnership at the back. 

Geraldo again impressed last week and its no just about him building on his fitness as he hadnt played much football when joining Ankaragucu. Captain Stelios Kitsiou was back to his best last weekend with 2 assists and again proving why he is one of the best wing backs in the Super Lig. 

On the opposite side of the pitch Karaman again preferred to go with Atilla Turan who chipped in with his 1st assist of the season against Goztepe. 

The team will go to Trabzon with confidence after the 3-0 win against Goztepe last week. It was an excellent overall performance and again Borven showing if you create opportunities for him he will score. 

The Trabzon match will be another difficult match. But another one which Ankaragucu can take points from. Its the same old story from Trabzon which has been the same ever since I have been following Turkish Football. They tend to get off to a bad start, before going on a good run where they look like they can challenge but then fail in some of the must win matches. 

They have a lot of good attacking options in Nwakaeme, Yusuf Sari, Caleb Ekuban and Djaniny who after a slow start has looked impressive. The problem with Trabzon is inconsistency and although they have looked better at the back, you still fancy your chances of scoring against them. 

If Ankaragucu can stop the likes of Nwakaeme and Djaniny and stay organised they have the pace with the likes of Saba, Geraldo and Paintsil to punish Trabzonspor on the counter attack. The key to the match will be the defence and making it difficult for Trabzons attacking players. 

Early team news, Korcan Celikay has returned to full training while Daniel Lukasik and Alper Potuk are both carrying knocks and will be evaluated. 

Monday, March 15, 2021




Greetings Kankas and Kankies.


This was not so much a revival, as an off-day for Fenerbahce who were a shadow of the team they have been in recent weeks.


This match had ‘home banker’ written all over it with Fener challenging for a Champions League position and playing against the league basement team.


However, not for the first time, Gencler tore up the script and made Fener ‘eat humble pie’   !!


It was all going according to plan when Fener took the lead, but then they folded and Gencler took advantage of their profligacy.


Also, Gencler has appointed their 4th Coach of the season, which is surely a world record   ??!!   He is Ozcan Bizati who has been around the Turkish leagues for a good few years and was Assistant Coach for Gencler and Ankaragucu among his many Clubs.


Fenerbahce             1                          GENCLERBIRLIGI            2


Team – Nordfeldt, Pehlivan, Akbas, Arda, Johanssen, Soner, Piris, Ayite, Yildirim, Candeias and Lima


Substitutes – Mugni, Yilmaz and Srdan


Fener started the match with a swagger and scored after 8 minutes, but it was correctly ruled offside.


2 minutes later Nordfeldt pulled off a great save when one-on-one with an attacker.

However, the goal finally arrived in the 34th minute when Filip headed in at the back post from a free kick on the right.


Cue .......... Fener goal rush   ??!!       Wrong !!!     4 minutes later it was 1-1 after a calamity in the Fener defence.     A cross came in from the left which Altay had covered, but his defender, Aziz, stepped in ahead of him and deflected the ball into the net.     We can only wonder what Altay said to him   !!!


Just before the half time whistle Lima had a chance to score, but Altay was a split second ahead of him and smothered the ball.


Into the 2nd half and I could sense Fener’s frustration.    They probably couldn’t get their head around the fact that Gencler was not ‘lying down’ and settling for 1 point.    The frustration turned to panic in the 62nd minute when Gencler took the lead.


It was a great move down the right with inter-passing and when the cross came in from the right, Ayite was first to it and he bulleted a header inside the right post with Altay helpless.   There was some hesitation by the referee before awarding the goal to check VAR, but the goal was given.


Fener was in panic mode as the clock ran-down and were guilty of hurried passes going astray, but they almost equalised in time added on when a shot hit the post and was cleared.


So, the record book will show a win for Gencler, but I doubt if we will see such a ragged and listless performance like this from Fener again this season.


Gencler’s first win in 12 attempts, but they are still propping up the league.    If it really is a Gencler revival then they will have to prove it against fellow strugglers Kasimpasa next Saturday.    This match will be the acid test   !!!


All the best from Eski Kanka Jim

Sunday, March 14, 2021




Greetings Kankas and Kankies.       


Ankaragucu moved out of the relegation zone today at the Eryaman Stadium when they had an emphatic 3rd consecutive win.


They now take closer order to the mid-table teams who will now be looking over their shoulders at the Ankaragucu resurgence.


ANKARAGUCU            3                           Goztepe       0


Team – Ricardo, Kitsiou, Kulusic, Sarlija, Attila, Endri, Ibrahim, Geraldo, Alper Saba and Borven


Substitutes – Paintsil, Assane, Emre, Orkan and Badji


Ankaragucu started impressively and Saba almost opened the scoring after 14 minutes when he received a pass on the left.    He cut-into the box and let fly with a goal bound shot which was well saved for a corner.


However, the opening goal duly arrived 13 minutes later when a cross was sent over from the left touchline and Borven ghosted in between two defenders to bullet a header in with the goalkeeper having no chance.


9 minutes later and Saba had another chance when, after good work by Geraldo, he had a great chance but his shot was weak and easily saved.


Almost on the half time whistle and Kitsiou had a chance but he got himself in a tangle in the box and had the ball cleared by a defender before he could recover.


Goztepe had an equal share of possession in the 1st half but Ricardo didn’t have a direct shot to deal with during the 1st half and very little to do in the 2nd half either   !!


Ankaragucu continued to attack in the 2nd half as they searched for the 2nd goal, and it almost arrived 2 minutes in when Endri had a goal bound shot well saved.


It did arrive in the 60th minute   !!       Paintsil, who had just come off the bench, was the architect when he worked his way from the left touchline into the centre and laid the ball off to Kitsiou on the right.    Kitsiou slipped the ball into the path of Borven who blasted the ball into the net with the Goztepe defence spinning around in circles   !!     A truly great team goal.


The 3rd goal arrived 2 minutes later and Kitsiou was again the provider when he passed to Endri just inside the box on the right.   Endri picked his spot just inside the right post with a measured shot with the goalkeeper stuck to his line and the Goztepe defence obviously in shock   !!


Ankaragucu was guilty of taking their foot off the gas for the remaining half hour and I’m sure Hikmet Bey will remind them this week that it is not the way forward.    It may also be due to the many changes that were made which usually interrupts the flow of the match.


There was still time for Badji and Paintsil to combine to carve out a chance before the final whistle, but Paintsil’s shot was weak and easily saved.


Ibrahim also had a chance in the dying minutes, but his goal bound shot was well saved.


It is not often, in recent times, that we have had the opportunity to praise the Ankaragucu Coach, but we must give praise where praise is due.   Hikmet Karaman has turned this team around and he has transferred his passion to the players who obviously have responded and respect his judgment.


Praise also for the ‘new’ Borven who has rediscovered his predatory instincts, and as Nadeem mentioned last week, he also tracks back to help the defence when necessary.


It was interesting to note today that although Goztepe had 60% of the possession, they managed only 2 shots on target, as opposed to Ankaragucu’s 9 on target.


So, to next Saturday, and Ankaragucu travel to the Black Sea coast to take on Trabzonspor who are sitting in 4th position in the league.    At least the Trabzon Stadium won’t be the usual cauldron of noise without spectators, but they will, of course, be respected.     Hikmet Bey will no doubt remind the players that if they can beat Galata.....spit....saray, then they can do the same to Trabzon   !!!


Bring it on, and watch this space for the outcome.


All the best from Eski Kanka Jim

Friday, March 12, 2021

Ankaragucu vs Goztepe match preview!


Two wins in a row have given Ankaragucu the lifeline they needed in their bid to stay in the Turkish Super Lig. The fact that they came against Galatasaray and Fatih Karagumruk is even more impressive. Hikmet Karaman celebrated his birthday earlier in the week and 3 points against Goztepe would be the perfect gift.

Ankaragucu still have a lot of work to do if they are to stay up but the encouraging signs are the team looks organised and you can sense a real togetherness since Hikmet Karaman has come in. Wins bring confidence and you can see some of the players thriving.

Alper Potuk and Torgeir Borven are the two in particular who have benefited most under the guidence of Karaman. When Ankaragucu signed Alper he was the marquee signing with big things expected of the former Fenerbahce and Turkish International. No one has ever doubted his talent, but his fitness levels and attitude certainly could be questioned. Giving him the captains armband was also a big mistake. 

It looked like Alper had no future with the club due to disciplinary problems. But you have to give the 29 year old credit for the way he has bounced back. His performances over the last two games have been very impressive and exactly why Ankaragucu wanted to sign him. His quality on the ball, skill and the way he can link midfield and attack is key to Ankaragucu staying up.

Big things were also expected from Borven when he signed. He had a great scoring record in the Norwegian league and looked like a major coup for the club. Fuat Capa and Mustafa Dalci however played him sparingly and never gave him a run of games despite having the best goals and assists per minutes played in the squad. 

Under Hikmet Karaman, Borven has been more than just a penalty box scorer. His work rate is impressive as he covers the full length of the pitch and has alternated between multiple different positions on the pitch. He also looks like he is enjoying his football. 

Goztepe are this weeks opponents and another in which Ankaragucu will be confident that they can take points from. The visitors however will be tough opposition and find themselves in 9th position. 

Halil Akbunar and Cherif Ndiaye are the two players i see as the dangermen for Goztepe. Ive always been a big fan of Akbunar and his creativity, while Ndiaye in the short time ive saw him looks a handful up front. 

They are on a great run of form at the moment and are on a 5 game unbeaten run including wins against Fenerbahce, Basaksehir and Erzurumspor which see them as one of the form teams in the Super Lig and also fighting for a European place. 

Early team news see Ankaragucu have a full squad to chose from with the likes of Atakan, Badji and Pinto all back in training and available for selection. 

We expect Karaman to go with the same team that has been successful over the last 2 games and hope they can make it 3 in a row. 

Monday, March 08, 2021




Greetings Kankas and Kankies.


Gencler was on the back foot during most of the match yesterday chasing the ball against a Basaksehir team determined to keep possession and deny Gencler any hope of scoring.     In that respect, Basak succeeded, but in so doing they made it one of the most boring matches I have ever watched.


GENCLERBIRLIGI         0               Istanbul Basaksehir           1


Team – Nordfeldt, Johanssen, Diego, Piris, Polomat, Soner, Furman, Candeias, Yildirim, Yilmaz and Lima


Substitutes – Ayite, Mugnil and Arda


The 1st half was a .......... yawn ...... yawn.........affair  with the 1st real action in the 45th minute when from a Gencler corner Lima headed against the bar and the ball was cleared.    Basak ‘enjoyed’ 70% possession and had zero shots on target.     It was as if they were playing for one point  !!


It took Basak until 20 minutes into the 2nd half to have a shot on target when they broke away and a goal bound shot was saved by Nordfeldt.    At this stage they were still playing ponderous football from touchline to touchline and back to their goalkeeper.    Keeping possession, but going nowhere   !!


The match suddenly exploded into life around the 75th minute mark when numerous substitutions were made by both teams and they decided to go into all out attack mode.


DemBa had a great chance when from a cross from the right he hit it first time but Nordfeldt pulled off a great save to deny him.


Nearing the end of the match and Polomat received his 2nd yellow when he pulled an attacker back whilst in full flow heading for the box.     Uncharacteristic from him, but at this stage in the season perhaps frustration kicks in   !!


With the match heading for a 0-0 stalemate, DemBa once again came to the rescue of Basak in the 89th minute.    A shot from outside the box was well saved by Nordfeldt, but he spilled the save and DemBa was first to react and blasted the rebound into the net to secure an unlikely 3 points for Basak.


Gencler has now gone 11 matches without a win and the writing is on the wall that they must face the fact that they are staring relegation in the face.


As we know, there are no ‘easy’ matches in this league and next Sunday will be no exception as Gencler travel to Istanbul to face a Fenerbahce team currently challenging for top spot in the league.


Probably a damage limitation line-up for Gencler to try and ‘shut up shop’.      As always, watch this space for the outcome.


All the best from Eski Kanka Jim

Sunday, March 07, 2021

Fatih Karagumruk 0-1 Ankaragücü match report!


Six points from tough games against Galatasaray and Fatih Karagumruk have given Ankaragücü a lifeline in the fight against relegation. Another excellent performance under the guidance of Hikmet Karaman who is proving what a great coach he is.

Team - Freidrich, Kitsiou, Sarlija, Kulusic, Atilla, Ibrahim, Alper, Endri, Saba, Geraldo, Borven

Subs - Furkan, Pazdan, Erdi, Pinto, Orkan, Assane, Ali Kaan, Badji, Voca, Emre

Ankaragücü started the match well and looked the more lively in the first ten minutes. Fatih Karagumruk are a good side though and it was Castro who had the first chance of the game but his weak effort was easily saved by Freidrich.

Three minutes later and excellent play from Alassane Ndao down the right found Castro free in the box but he blasted high and wide when he should have done better. A few minutes later Karagumruk had a goal rightly ruled out for offside.

The first chance for Ankaragücü didn’t come until the 43rd minute when Endri saw his 30 yard free kick tipped over by Viviano. One minute later Bertolucci had a chance at the other end after nice play from Castro but he sliced his shot high and wide.

Half Time 0-0

Karagumruk started the second half well and nice play from Borini down the left who crossed for Castro at the back post, but again he somehow headed over. Another let off for Ankaragücü.

Then the opening goal came on the 54th minute. Nice link up play from Geraldo then Saba who squared the ball for Alper Potuk who placed his shot past Viviano in the Karagumruk goal to make it 0-1. A great goal and now it was time for Ankaragücü to defend for the next 35 minutes!

Karagumruk did have a penalty claim which looked like it was going to be given after Borven pulled back Ndao in the box. But thankfully VAR said no due to Ndao being offside.

Karagumruk piled on the pressure in injury time with Salibur firing over from 25 yards and Ricardo made an outstanding save from Melvut from point blank range. Melvut had another chance at the end but he headed over.

Saba could have finished the game off for Ankaragücü but he shot straight at Viviano. Ankaragücü held on for the 3 points and their is now a buzz around the club. Hikmet Karaman has galvanised the squad and everyone is fighting for each other.

Sarlija and Ibrahim both impressed today as did Kulusic, Geraldo and Alper. But special mention to Borven who played in almost every position on the park and worked so hard for the team. It’s this kind of work rate and togetherness that keeps teams up!

Next up is Goztepe next Sunday!

Friday, March 05, 2021

Fatih Karagumruk vs Ankaragucu match preview!


Ankaragucu done the unthinkable midweek as they won 2-1 at home against leaders Galatasaray to give the club and fans hope that they can still stay in the Turkish Super Lig this season. The team are now 3 points from safety and also have a game in hand. 

That said, we have seen this story so often, where Ankaragucu raise everyone's hopes and then follow it up with another horror show the week after. Hopefully that will not the the case this Sunday afternoon as they take on Fatih Karagumruk in Istanbul. 

Karagumruk like Hatayspor have been a breath of fresh air in the Turkish Super Lig this season and have shown that newly promoted clubs can have a successful season if they get their recruitment right. They currently sit 8th in the league but Ankaragucu might be meeting them at the right time having won only 1 of their last 4 matches including a loss against Kasimpasa and draw last week at Erzurumspor.

From the small neighborhood of Istanbul, Karagumruk have punched above their weight and made some big signings for a club of their stature. Emilio Viviano, Lucas Biglia, Andrea Bertolacci, Lucas Castro, Fabio Borini, Jimmy Durmaz, Jermaine Lens, and Melvut Erdinc are all experienced summer signings who have played their part in the clubs excellent season. Alassane Ndao is another who has caught the eye after signing last season. He is one of the leaders in the Super Lig with assists but also along with Saba has a high turnover rate. 

Hikmet Karaman again showed his value as Manager during the week with making more tactical decisions including moving Endri into a more central role, while starting Alper Potuk and Geraldo. The changes paid off as all 3 impressed and made a big difference to the midfield having attacking options and players who can keep the ball. He also kept faith in Saba who repaid his boss with an outstanding goal and Alper added an assist. 

The one area of the team i still see a weakness is the left back position. Atilla for me just isnt good enough and Pinto has too many injury problems. Sarlija and Kulusic will likely retain their place at the back alongside Kitsiou. Sarlija still has that tendency to dive and play act, if he cuts that out of his game he can be a very good player for Ankaragucu. 

Borven is starting to thrive with his run of games, and although he didnt score midweek, he worked hard and did his best to link up play. Geraldo was excellent in his first full game, he can play with his back to goal and also has an excellent cross, and played his part in the first goal. 

Sundays match will be another tough encounter. Last time both sides met it was a 2-2 draw in Ankara. A similar outcome wouldnt be the worst of results this time but Ankaragucu will fancy the 3 points. 

In order to take any positive outcome from the match, the team will need to be solid at the back. A strong defence and keeping 10 men on the pitch will be key. 

Lets hope its another 3 points and the great escape is on!

Wednesday, March 03, 2021




Greetings Kankas and Kankies.


Some people (not us kankas   !!!) were saying that Ankaragucu had thrown the towel in and were doomed to relegation this season.     Ho ho ho   !!!     Think again non-believers   !!     Ankaragucu showed tremendous resilience and skill tonight to topple the table toppers and deservedly took all 3 points   !!


ANKARAGUCU         2                  Galatasaray           1


Team – Korcan, Kitsiou, Kulusic, Sarlija, Attila, Endri, Ibrahim, Geraldo, Alper, Saba and Borven


Substitutes – Voca, Emre, Ricardo, Lukasik and Orkan


It was mostly all Galatasaray pressure in the 1st half, but Ankaragucu was not sitting back and allowing it.    They were fighting for every ball and making every effort to attack.     However, the first serious chance of the match fell to Galatasaray after 20 minutes when a cross came in from the left and a goal bound header was well saved by Korcan for a corner.


10 minutes later a careless back-pass by Ibrahim to Korcan was short and was latched onto by an attacker.   From a tight angle his shot went past the post with Korcan covering the shot.


5 minutes before the break and Korcan injured himself when reaching for a cross/shot and he hit the post and went down.    It looked like he injured his leg when he fell.    He couldn’t continue and Ricardo came on.


2 minutes to go and Ankaragucu eventually put a shot on target when Geraldo had a shot from just outside the box in the centre saved at the left post.


1 minutes before the half time whistle and some great work by Geraldo on the right when he crossed into the box.    Endri was shaping to take it on the volley but was brought down and the referee pointed immediately to the spot.    Up stepped Ibrahim to send his shot inside the left post with the goalkeeper diving to the right.


An excellent 1st half with all the Ankaragucu players going flat-out and full marks to the defence for staying solid.


The 2nd half was only 9 minutes old when Saba received a great pass on the left.    Off he went, cut into the box, avoided a challenge and lobbed the ball over the goalkeeper into the top right for a fantastic goal.


2 nil up and Galatasaray was looking down, but not out.     Then the drama 2 minutes later .....


 Mohammed put his elbow into Ibrahim’s face in a challenge right in front of the referee.    Straight RED card and off he went  !!!


Galatasaray rallied and continued to attack, but the Ankaragucu defence played out of the skins tonight and dealt with everything that came their way ........... well until near the end !!!


Saba almost scored a 2nd goal just before the 90th minute when his shot whizzed narrowly past the post.


Then the consolation goal for Galata.....spit......saray when Lukasik was dispossessed easily and the break was on.    The ball was played out on the left to Akturkoglu who curved the ball around Ricardo and in.


The final whistle was a relief and celebrations all round to hail Ankaragucu’s first win since the 21st of January.     Ankaragucu therefore move off the bottom position in the league and are now only 3 points behind the safety zone.      A great confidence boost for the team ahead of Sunday’s match against Fatih Karagumruk in what will be another must win match to put pressure on the bottom teams in the league.


I heard the post-match interview with Saba and Kitsiou (in English) and they were both smiling like Cheshire Cats and saying that the whole team believe they can avoid the drop.    That’s fighting talk and great to hear them saying it on live TV.    


I’m sure Oracle Kanka Johnny S will be full of optimism for Sunday   ??!!


All the best from Eski Kanka Jim

Tuesday, March 02, 2021




Greetings Kankas and Kankies.


1-0 up at half time with Antep looking like losers and then ......... the transformation  !


10 minutes into the 2nd half and Antep was down to 10 men and suddenly they were a different team.   Amazing turnaround  !


Gencler is now staring relegation in the face after 10 matches without a win  !


Gaziantep           2                   GENCLERBIRLIGI            1


Team – Nordfeldt, Johanssen, Piris, Arda, Omurcan, Yildirim, Furman, Yilmaz, Soner, Candeias and Sandro Lima


Substitutes – Diego, Altiparmak and Ilker


It was pretty much an end to end match, until the 18th minute when Gencler scored the opening goal.    There was a fast break down the right with the Antep defence caught out.    The ball was crossed into Lima in the centre and his shot was parried by the goalkeeper and Lima was on hand to score the rebound.    The linesman’s flag went up for offside from the original pass on the right.    However, before play could resume, the referee received a message in his earpiece and the offside was cancelled and the goal given.    Having seen the replay of the VAR, it was an extremely tight decision with only centimetres in it   !!


Gencler continued to look the likelier team and 5 minutes later could have increased their lead when there was another fast break on the right by Lima who crossed for Furman to shoot just past the right post.


2 minutes later and Yilmaz had a chance to score, but his goal bound shot was saved and cleared.


Antep reminded me of ‘the Ankaragucu Way’, ie, passing across the field in midfield and passing direct to Gencler players.   Even with 68% possession in the 1st half they never seriously troubled Nordfeldt.


The ‘game changer’ came in the 57th minute when the VAR camera caught an off-the-ball incident when Mirallas kicked a Gencler player from behind and the referee received a message in his earpiece.    He checked the VAR himself and returned to the field to produce a RED card for Mirallas.


Normally when this happens, the team would retreat into defence until they had time to adjust.   However, it seemed to fire-up Antep and 2 minutes later they were level.   


It was a terrible mistake by the normally reliable Arda when he sent a weak back-pass to Nordfeldt which was immediately latched onto by Ozer who had the easiest of tasks of picking his spot and leaving Nordfeldt helpless.


It was all 10 man Antep now as they searched for the winner and Gencler had Nordfeldt to thank on several occasions with timely saves from the Antep forwards. 


The winning goal came as no surprise and a goal worthy of winning any match.   A quick Antep break down the left and a pin-point cross into the box from the goal-line for Jefferson to power in a bullet of a header with Nordfeldt having no chance.


A truly memorable come-back from Antep and Gencler must now be wondering where their next point is coming from  !!


Next up is a home match against Basaksehir on Sunday.    Last year’s champions are also struggling and are dangerously close to the relegation zone, so it will be another tense affair with both teams desperate for points.


As always, watch this space for the outcome.


All the best from Eski Kanka Jim