Spor Toto Super League standings

Monday, September 27, 2010

Spor Toto Super League – Week 6 Recap

The week after a derby match gets people to catch their breath, and back to normal business when it comes to Turkish soccer. Week 6 of the Spor Toto Super League was more of a "carry on" when it came to play and the results. One team needed to get a win to placate their fans, one team has come roaring back four weeks after panic was setting in, and the leaders continued their fast start.

The week opened in Bursa Ataturk stadium as Bursaspor hosted Bucaspor. Bursa Ataturk stadium has been a fortress for the defending champions, as they haven't lost at home in league play since November. Bursaspor got off to a fast start in the fourth minute. Turgay Bahadir's header came off the post and Huseyin Cimsir scored to put Bursaspor up 1-0. Bursaspor continued to find opportunities to get their second goal. In the 49th minute, Gokcek Vederson's cross was headed off the post by Omer Erdogan. Sercan Yildirim missed chances in the 61st and 79th minutes. Frederico Insua missed a chance in the 83rd minute off a counterattack. Regardless of the missed chances, Bursaspor will go into their Champions League match against Rangers with much momentum after this 1-0 victory.

The Ankara derby would be the featured match on Saturday. Both Gençlerbirliği and Ankaragücü would be looking for the win after disappointing starts to their seasons. In the 18th minute, Gençlerbirliği goalkeeper Serdar Kulbilge was injured in a collision with Ankaragücü's Roguy Meye, and couldn't continue. He left his spot to backup goalkeeper Ozkan Karabulut. In the 44th minute, Ankaragücü's Muhammet Hanefi tripped Gençlerbirliği's Serkan Calik in the penalty box, and referee Suleyman Abay pointed to the spot. Shane Smeltz converted the penalty, and Gençlerbirliği got the lead 1-0 going into halftime. Smeltz became the first New Zealand native to score in the history of the Turkish Super League. Ankaragücü tried to make a comeback in the second half, but victory this day went to Gençlerbirliği. Some Ankaragücü fans reacted angrily to the result, and were chanting for the board or head coach Umit Ozat to resign.

After a 1-1 draw last week on the road against Fenerbahçe, Beşiktaş were in good spirits. Coming home against Antalyaspor, Beşiktaş looked to get another three points to continue their climb up the standings. Guti did not play in this match due to an injury, but Fabian Ernst was a more than capable replacement. In the 55th minute, Ernst passed a through ball to Bobo in the box and Bobo converted the chance to put Beşiktaş up 1-0. But it seemed that Beşiktaş was going to be set up for disappointment, when in the 68th minute, a mistake from Beşiktaş goalkeeper Hakan Arikan led to Tita scoring the tying goal for Antalyaspor. This was the second gaffe in two weeks from the goalkeeper. Arikan would not become the goat in this match, as in the first minute of stoppage time Ernst hooked up with Bobo again, and Bobo scored to make the match 2-1 to Beşiktaş. Antalyaspor's Deniz Baris had a chance in front of the goal at the tail end of the game, but missed wide, and Beşiktaş won 2-1.

Eskişehirspor has been disappointing so far this season, and it seemed that Gaziantepspor gave the Eskişehirspor fans more pain. Eskişehirspor fans protested with five minutes of silence due to their team's poor form. In the 20th minute, Serdar Kurtulus scored to give Gaziantepspor the lead 1-0. During the last ten minutes of the match, the Eskişehirspor fans chanted for the board and head coach Riza Calimbay to resign. Gaziantepspor won the match 1-0 and gave Eskişehirspor even more misery. Two days after the match, it was announced by Eskişehirspor that Riza Calimbay was sacked as Eskişehirspor head coach.

The match of the week this week featured Kayserispor hosting Trabzonspor at Kadir Has stadium. Before the match, Kayserispor head coach Shota Arveladze saluted the Trabzonspor fans that made the trip to Kayseri. Arveladze previously played for Trabzonspor in the mid-1990s and is considered a legendary figure with the Trabzonspor faithful. The match itself was disappointing. A potential goal from Kayserispor's Onder Turaci in the 51st minute was called back because of an offside. Cards were abundant in this match as five Kayserispor players received yellow cards, and Trabzonspor's Giray Kacar received his second yellow card and was sent off with 10 minutes to go in the match. The match ended 0-0 and both teams had to do with a point each.

Konyaspor hosted Karabukspor this week in a battle of promoted teams. Ivan Lietava got the scoring started in the second minute as he put Konyaspor in the lead. The 15th minute saw Florin Cernat tie the match for Karabukspor, and the teams went into halftime tied 1-1. In the 52nd minute, Karabukspor's Hakan Ozmert gave Karabukspor the lead. But Konyaspor scored in the 68th minute through Peter Grajciar, and the match ended in a 2-2 draw.

After starting the season with two consecutive losses, Galatasaray recovered from that start by winning three straight. They hosted Istanbul Büyükşehir Belediyespor, which has given the other two Istanbul giants trouble during their match. Galatasaray got the scoring started in the 5th minute, as Milan Baros put the ball into the back of the net from a cross from Serkan Kurtulus. In the 13th minute, a handball was called against Istanbul Büyükşehir Belediyespor's Rizvan Sahin in the box and referee Bulent Yildirim pointed to the spot. Baros converted the penalty to double Galatasaray's lead. Baros got the hat trick in the 41st minute. A pass into the box from Aydin Yilmaz found Baros and Baros finished off the chance. Galatasaray played more conservatively in the second half, as their three goal lead seemed a mountain to climb. Herve Tum got a consolation goal for Istanbul Büyükşehir Belediyespor in the 66th minute. But it was too big of a hill to climb for the municipal team, as Galatasaray won their fourth straight match with a 3-1 score.

With a win last week, Manisaspor got the Hikmet Karaman era off to a good start. Milan Baros may have gotten a hat trick for Galatasaray, but Canadian international Josh Simpson also got a hat trick himself. Simpson scored in the 14th, 90th, and the 90+2 minutes to give Manisaspor a 3-0 victory over Sivasspor. Manisaspor wins their second straight match after starting the season with four straight losses.

The immense expectations placed upon Fenerbahçe by their fans leave little to no room for error. This week Fenerbahçe faced a must win game on the road to Kasımpaşa. This match was played at Galatasaray's Ali Sami Yen stadium due to renovations at Kasımpaşa's Recep Tayyip Erdogan stadium, and it would be the final time Fenerbahçe would play at the home of their hated rivals. It didn't look good for Fenerbahçe to start off. Kasımpaşa's Sahin Aygunes scored in the 6th minute to put Fenerbahçe on the ropes early. Fenerbahçe got their opportunity to tie the match in the 15th minute. Ersen Martin handled the ball in the penalty box, and Alex de Souza converted the penalty to tie the match 1-1. Fenerbahçe got the lead through Emre Belozoglu in the 21st minute, and Mamadou Niang padded the lead in the 24th minute. But Kasımpaşa scored through Ersen Martin one minute later, and it seemed that if Fenerbahçe was to win, it would have to be in a dogfight, as the halftime score saw Fenerbahçe up 3-2. Mamadou Niang scored again in the 64th minute to give Fenerbahçe a 4-2 lead. It seemed that Fenerbahçe would cruise to the win, and they would emphatically win in stoppage time. Mamadou Niang scored in the 90th minute to give himself a hat trick, and five minutes into stoppage time, Alex de Souza scored the final goal of the match to give Fenerbahçe an emphatic 6-2 victory over Kasımpaşa. Kasımpaşa's poor start to the season continued, and they continue to occupy last place in the Spor Toto Super League.

As of the posting of this article, it is still unknown whether the Turkish Football Federation will award three points to Bursaspor in a default victory due to the events in the match against Gaziantepspor last week. Bursaspor continues to lead the league as they have not dropped points.

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