Ankaragucu enter the most important week of the season so far with games against Konyaspor and then the Ankara derby on Sunday. All 3 clubs are fighting relegation and the outcomes will go a long way in determining the clubs fate come the end of the season.
Another fantastic result at the weekend for Ankaragucu as they kept another clean sheet and won 1-0 against Antalyaspor. The 3 points take the team out of the relegation zone and gives them confidence going into tomorrows game with Konyaspor.
One of the first things Hikmet Karaman did when he came back to the club, was tighten up the defence. The team have kept 4 clean sheets since his return with only Hatayspor and Trabzon scoring more than 1 goal against Ankaragucu.
Michael Pazdan came back into the side at the weekend in place of Sarlija who had to make do with a place on the bench. The Pole has came in for criticism this season with some of his performances and the sending off at Kayserispor. Against Antalyaspor he was back to his best and played a big in the 3 points alongside Thiago Pinto, Ante Kulusic and Stelios Kitsiou.
Thiago Pinto also returned to the starting line up and arguably put in his best performance of the season. Defensively he made 2-3 last minute blocks to stop clear goals, and he again put in a beautiful cross for Borven who scored the only goal of the game.
When Ankaragucu signed Torgeir Borven back in the summer, it was seen as something of a coup for the club. He had an excellent scoring record in the Norwegian Premier League. Both Fuat Capa and Mustafa Dalci for some reason decided Jonathan Bolingi and Emre Gural were better options in attack. Hikmet Karaman has again shown his man management by putting trust in Borven and he has repaid his manager with his 10th goal of the season and is now a key player.
The home side Konyaspor will be difficult opponents and are on good form under Ilhan Palut with only 1 defeat in their last 8 games including winning their last 2. On paper they have too good a team to go down with the likes of Deni Milosevic, Petr Skubic, Jesse Sekedika and can even call on Farouk Miya from the bench. They will likely play a 4-2-3-1 formation which Ankaragucu can match up to.
The last time the two sides met Ankaragucu ran out 4-3 winners in a 7 goal thriller. Hikmet Karaman will be hoping for a better defensive performance this time round but a similar outcome taking all 3 points. If Ankaragucu can finish this week of with 4 points from the two games it will be a great week for the club.