Galatasaray looking for stairway to league title
CİHAN PhotoAs two leading title contenders, Beşiktaş and Fenerbahçe, lost two key points each during the rare week day campaign at Spor Toto Super League, leader Galatasaray prepares to take on Gençlerbirliği, a match that might clear the way to the season title for the Istanbul side. The Lions are expected to be comfortable playing the Ankara side on May 16, but coach Hamza Hamzaoğlu remains cautious.
“There is no room for slack,” he said, following the losses of the archrivals. Nothing is guaranteed yet,” he said, signaling that his squad will sweat until the last whistle.
Galatasaray barely beat Mersin İdmanyurdu 1-0 in an away match on May 12, thanks to a clean shot by winger Yasin Öztekin in the box area in the 16th minute.
Mersin will host a wounded Fenerbahçe on May 17. Istanbul’s canaries drew 1-1 against SAI Kayseri Erciyesspor on May 13, as they failed to close the one-point gap with leader Galatasaray.
The game at the Şükrü Saraçoglu Stadium in Istanbul saw Fenerbahçe take an early lead with center-back Egemen Korkmaz in the 2nd minute. However, Kayseri’s Cameroonian striker Jacques Zoua lost no time for an equalizer in the 6th minute.
Beşiktaş, which visited Akhisar Belediyespor of the Aegean town in high hopes, faced total failure at the closing game of the week, as it tied against Akhisar Belediyespor, 1-1, May 14.
Home team Akhisar Belediyespor scored the leading goal in the 14th minute when a header of their forward, former Beşiktaş striker Mehmet Akyüz, found the net. Visiting Besiktaş scored the equalizer with Demba Ba’s header in the 54th minute but both sides failed to produce a winner.
Despite the point gap, Beşiktaş has raised hopes for the league title since they will play away against Galatasaray in the 33rd week in the 34-week league campaign. Beşiktaş will face Torku Konyaspor on May 18.
Galatasaray now has 70 points, with Fenerbahçe chasing them three points behind. Besiktaş is third with 66 points and three games to spare.
Kardemir Karabükspor and Balıkesirspor, trapped under the relegation line, will face off May 16 in Balıkesir.
Medicana Sivasspor will host Kasımpaşa the same day. Kayseri Erciyesspor will take on İstanbul Başakşehir, the fourth Istanbul team fighting for a ticket to the UEFA Europe League next season. Bursaspor, one of their two main rivals, will host Gaziantepspor, as Trabzonspor will visit Eskişehirspor.
Çakyur Belediyespor, just above the relegation line but with a six-point cushion, will try to remain in the league against Akhisar.