Beşiktaş gives ground a legendary send-off with last-gasp win against Fenerbahçe
ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News
With the crucial win, Beşiktaş overtook Fenerbahçe for second place in the league standings. The Black Eagles now have 42 points – two more than Fenerbahçe and four fewer than leaders Galatasaray. AA photo
Beşiktaş made it a night to remember, winning the last Istanbul derby at the team’s venerable İnönü Stadium with a last-gasp winner from Olcay Şahan in the third minute of injury time in an absorbing Spor Toto Super League clash.
Beşiktaş, which will temporarily play at another ground next season while Dolmabahçe’s İnönü Stadium is knocked and replaced by a new arena in the same location, badly wanted to vanquish their cross-town rivals in the final derby at the ground, but appeared destined to settle for a 2-2 draw following an excellent performance from the always-excellent Moussa Sow, who scored both goals for the visitors.
With the last touch of the game, however, Olcay poked the ball past Fenerbahçe goalkeeper Volkan Demirel, sending the home crowd into raptures with the 3-2 victory.
Fenerbahçe thought they had taken the lead in the 19th minute when Pierre Webo poked the ball home following an impressive Dirk Kuyt volley off a corner. The referee’s assistant, however, controversially signaled offside on the play, even though replays showed that there had been no infraction.
Beşiktaş’s Scottish goalkeeper Allan McGregor was then called on to make a difficult save from Emre Belözoğlu’s shot from distance, but he was powerless to keep out Moussa Sow’s short-range, 24th-minute header from the resulting corner.
The hosts began to find their feet after the goal, but missed a critical touch around the final third. The club, however, was rewarded for their pressure in minute 40 when Manuel Fernandes whipped in a free kick from the left side that Kuyt headed into his own goal while trying to defend against Tomas Sivok.
Webo nearly put Fenerbahçe back in front in the 56th minute off a corner, but his point-black scissors kick was cleared off the line by Beşiktaş’s Olcay Şahan.
The home team then forged ahead out of nothing, as Mamadou Niang scored his first goal against his former employers in minute 60 after finding the ball at his feet about eight meters out following a knockdown from a teammate.
Beşiktaş’s joy was short-lived, however, as Sow equalized just three minutes later from a header.
Fenerbahçe appeared to regain the lead just two minutes later, but Webo again saw a strike disallowed, this time for a correct, albeit marginal, offside decision.
Both teams failed to find a winner until Olcay stole the show with one final flourish.
With the victory, Beşiktaş overtook Fenerbahçe for second place in the league standings. The Black Eagles now have 42 points – two more than Fenerbahçe and four fewer than leaders Galatasaray.
Beşiktaş was able to claw into Galatasaray’s lead atop the table after the latter was forced to settle for a 0-0 draw with Eskişehir away on March 2. Lions’ trainer Fatih Terim was not on the sidelines for the match, as he sat out the first of a three-match ban for dissent in last week’s match versus Orduspor.
Bursaspor also held onto fourth spot with a 1-0 victory over Sivasspor on March 3, while Elazığspor took a big step toward safety by beating bottom-dwelling Akhisar Belediyespor 1-0. The eastern side is just one point off Gaziantepspor, the last team above the drop zone with 28 points.
Kasımpaşa will host Trabzonspor on March 4 in the final fixture of round 24.