Fenerbahçe loses game, top spot in league
Alanyaspor has climbed atop the Turkish Süper Lig standings on goal difference despite a home draw after Fenerbahçe suffered its first league defeat of the season.
Fenerbahçe was beaten at home 2-0 on Nov. 7, while Alanyaspor was held to a 1-1 draw by Trabzonspor.
The results mean that Alanya remains as the only unbeaten team in the league competition who goes to the international break atop the standings with 17 points in seven games, ahead of Fenerbahçe, which has played eight games, on goal difference.
Following a goalless first half, Alanyaspor’s English defender Steven Caulker scored twice in the second. He put his side ahead in the 49th minute but scored an own goal 10 minutes later giving one point to Trabzonspor, playing under a caretaker coach after Eddie Newton was fired last week.
Speaking after the game, Alanyaspor coach Çağdaş Atan said it was “good not to have lost against a big club such as Trabzonspor.”
“We went ahead in the second half, but we conceded a simple goal,” he told reporters.
“My players have played very well in the league so far, they have fought well. I think tonight they used their right to play bad, I thank them all anyways. We want to make the best use of the international break and start another winning streak.”
In Istanbul, Konyaspor broke the deadlock in the second half, scoring the opener in the 67th minute when Serbian midfielder Marko Jevtovic fired a spectacular volley.
In the 78th minute, the visiting side doubled the lead as Ukrainian forward Artem Kravets finished in the penalty area.
Fenerbahçe coach Erol Bulut said the team could not perform as planned, hinting at a rotation in the squad.
“The performances of some of our players have dropped in the last two-three weeks,” he said. “We will wait and see if there will be some changes [in the squad] after the international break.”
Galatasaray, meanwhile, grabbed a crucial 2-1 win at Sivasspor on Nov. 8 to climb up to the third spot.
The visiting side took the lead in the 19th minute when Moroccan midfielder Younes Belhanda scored the opener with a left-foot strike.
Veteran midfielder Arda Turan doubled the lead in the 48th minute putting the ball into Sivasspor’s net with a close-range finish on a Belhanda assist.
Caner Osmanpaşa pulled one back with a right-foot strike in the Galatasaray area in the 76th minute, however, the goal failed to inspire a comeback.
The comeback king of the week was defending champion Bşakşahir, which beat Gençlerbirliği 2-1 at home with goals in the last 10 minutes.
Sefa Yılmaz put the visiting side ahead as early as the fourth minute, putting the pressure on Başakşehir.
Buoyed by a Champions League victory over Manchester United midweek, Başakşehir struggled to keep up until Gençlerbirliği’s Swedish right-back Mattias Johansson was sent off in the 72nd minute.
Increasing its pace against a 10-man team, Başakşehir’s Norwegian forward Fredrik Gulbrandsen equalized with a header in the 80th minute, and Turkish midfielder Mehmet Topal scored the winner in the dying minutes of the game.
In the opening game of the week, Gaziantep defeated Beşiktaş 3-1 at home to seal its second win in the league this season.
Elsewhere, Kasımpaşa vs. Antalyaspor and Ankaragücü vs Karagümrük games ended in 2-2 draws, Hatayspor won 1-0 at Kayserispor, Malatyaspor beat Denizlispor 2-0 at home and Göztepe grabbed a point at Erzurumspor in a 1-1 draw.
The Süper Lig competition will continue on Nov. 20 following an international break.