fighting spirit was put to the test yesterday in Istanbul against the 2nd
top team who have been chasing Ankaragucu for most of the season.
Reduced to 10
men just before half time, it seemed that Ankaragucu would implode when
Umraniye took the lead just after the break.
However, Ankaragucu staged a remarkable fight-back in the 2nd
half to deservedly find the equaliser.
Umraniye 2 ANKARAGUCU 2
Team – Akin,
Yasin, Sinan, Yusuf, Erdem, Ishak, Abdullah, Owusu, Zahid, Murat and Aatif
Ali Kaan, Geraldo, Sahverdi, Ariyibi and Cem
Battle Damaged Kanka Damon, Maniac Kanka Harun, Kaleci Kanka Tansu and I met-up
in The Bira Park Bar full of optimism, but our faith in the team was put to the
test after a match of ups and downs !
It was a great
start by Ankaragucu when they took the lead after 9 minutes. A corner on the right was cleared to just
outside the box and the ball played back to near the right goal line for Owusu
to pass to Aatif who fired in at the near post from an acute angle.
still attacking and 5 minutes later it was Akin to the rescue as he tipped a
goal bound header over the bar.
was responsible for conceding the equaliser on the half hour mark when he
rushed out down the right goal line to recover the ball which Yacine was
chasing, but he was a second behind, and when Yacine turned him, he crossed at
a very acute angle to curl the ball in with the defender on the line unable to
stop the ball hitting the back of the net.
time and Owusu was unlucky to receive a 2nd yellow card (the first
having been given only a few minutes before) for a clumsy tackle (certainly not
malicious !!) and off he went to leave
Ankaragucu with a mountain to climb in the 2nd half !
almost surprised us 5 minutes into the 2nd half when Murat scorned a
great chance after a defensive error.
One on one with the goalkeeper, he shot direct at the goalkeeper and the
chance was lost.
2 minutes later
and chaos in the Ankaragucu penalty area when an attacker was scythed down in
the box and the referee had no hesitation in pointing to the spot. Antonio side-footed the penalty inside the
left post with Akin diving in the opposite direction.
Lots of glum
faces in The Bira Park with optimism gradually draining away !!
Half way through
the 2nd half and Ankaragucu was gradually taking control of the
match, notwithstanding that they were ‘the gallant 10 men’, and putting
Umraniye under pressure as they sought the equaliser.
scored with a shot from just outside the box, but it was well saved. Then, 8 minutes later the goalkeeper made
another acrobatic save from a Sinan header.
5 minutes later it was Geraldo who set-up Ariyibi for a shot which was
well saved again.
equaliser eventually came with 8 minutes of the match remaining and it was a
goal worthy of winning any match.
Murat took the throw-in on the right touch line, which was played to
Ariyibi who took the ball past a defender to the right goal line and sent a
perfect cut-back to Yasin on the left who stroked the ball in with the
goalkeeper helpless. An excellent and
well constructed goal !!
High praise for
the Ankaragucu team for their 2nd half efforts, and a special
mention here for Geraldo who probably had his best match for Ankaragucu with
his impressive workrate.
therefore retain their top spot in the league with a 3 points advantage over
Umraniye, but the chasing pack are still closing with Bandirma only 2 points
behind Umraniye and Eyup, Istanbulspor
and Erzurum not far behind.
be at home next Sunday against mid-table Adanaspor, so no let-up in the
pressure with the run-in starting now.
As always, watch
this space for the outcome.
All the best
from Eski Kanka Jim