Fans, players mourn Soma victims as Drogba makes huge donation
Galatasaray players took to the field wearing helmets ahead of their match against Kayseri Erciyesspor on May 17, in Istanbul. DHA PhotoFans and players alike mourned the tragic mine accident in Soma during sports matches across Turkey over the weekend.
Galatasaray players took to the field wearing helmets ahead of their match against Kayseri Erciyesspor on May 17. The Lions’ Italian manager Roberto Mancini also showed his solidarity by appearing in a helmet during his interview after the game. The players also held a banner reading “Neither red, nor yellow, everywhere is coal black.”
Meanwhile, it has been revealed that the club’s star Ivorian striker, Didier Drogba, would donate one million euros to the families of victims of the disaster, which claimed 301 lives. However, the legendary player has issued a statement saying he was annoyed that his donation became public. “I am a U.N. ambassador of goodwill and I will do all that I can to help the people in Soma. But I don’t want anyone to use my name. I’m not someone who will promote himself in such issues. I don’t need this sort of a self-promotion,” Drogba told journalists after the match.
Turkey’s most vocal supporters’ group, çArşı, also opened huge banners in memory of the victims during Beşiktaş match against Gençlerbirliği. The fans then chanted “Black!” over and over, instead of their traditional chant “Black, white!” in reference to the colors of Beşiktaş.
In basketball, both Galatasaray and Beşiktaş met in a crucial derby game in the playoff stage in Istanbul. The players of both teams observed one minute of silence for the victims in Soma while holding helmets on their chests.
Ex-footballer describes his experiences as miner’s son
Meanwhile, retired former Turkish international footballer Tümer Metin wrote an emotional piece on his experiences of growing up as the son of a miner. “Wherever I was, I would always hear the sound of the evening call to prayers. Because that sound was the moment when my father would come back to see the light,” wrote Metin in the piece published by daily Hürriyet May 18.
“I am not a father! But every day during the evening call to prayer I waited for my father to come back alive from the mine, just like the fathers in Soma are waiting with hope for their son to escape alive. I have lost a lot of relatives in mines, who don’t even have a gravestone,” he added.