Aydınlar spell an exercise in zigzagging

Aydınlar spell an exercise in zigzagging

Mehmet Ali Aydınlar has been the chairman of the Turkish Football Federation (TFF) during Turkish football’s most turbulent times, but his poor record of stability didn’t help the business supremo’s cause. 

From late June 2011 when he was the sole candidate for the hot seat, to Jan. 31 when he stepped down, the seven months Aydınlar spent as the TFF chief was not an easy task at all. But Aydınlar’s ever-changing stance in handling the match-fixing case, which went public with the detentions of suspects on July 3, 2011, -the very first week he took the post- meant he would not be remembered as a successful handler of the role. 

His first statement on the match-fixing case was: “The situation is disastrous,” on July 6 when he was briefed by the prosecutor Mehmet Berk. A week later, however, he would announce: “There was no evidence and there would be no delay in the football fixture.” 

In the following two weeks, he added: “the Turkish Super Cup match between [two suspects in the match-fixing case] Fenerbahçe and Beşiktaş was delayed” and the start of the Super League would be pushed to Sept. 9. 

Separately, he said on July 19, 2011, that the Ethics Committee of the TFF would decide based on the evidence granted from the prosecutors, regarding the match-fixing case. But the following month he said “they cannot announce the bans since they cannot obtain the defenses” from the suspects since the case was listed confidential.