Galatasaray faces huge Real Madrid task in Europe

Galatasaray faces huge Real Madrid task in Europe

ISTANBUL- Hürriyet Daily News
Galatasaray faces huge Real Madrid task in Europe

Galatasaray goalkeeper Fernando Muslera catches the ball while being challenged by Real Madrid’s Raphael Varane during the two teams’ first game. AFP photo

Galatasaray has a tough task when it tries to overturn a 3-0 deficit against Real Madrid in the second leg of their Champions League quarterfinal on Tuesday.

The Lions will be relying on Didier Drogba, who won the title last season with Chelsea, to put on another impressive performance after scoring two second-half goals to lead Galatasaray to a 3-1 victory over Mersin İdman Yurdu on April 6 in a Spor Toto Super League Game.

However, the mood at Galatasaray was soured at that game by coach Fatih Terim’s anger at refereeing decisions in a row which led to him and his two assistants being sent to the stands, overshadowing preparations for the return leg in Istanbul.

In Madrid last week, Galatasaray was taught “a good lesson” by the Spanish side, according to Drogba.

Drogba cites lack of experience

“We’re not at their level but I think it’s a lack of experience more than anything else,” Drogba told beIN Sport. “We’re learning, we’re a young team. There are things that need improving.

“It’s a good lesson, and one we have to show we’ve learned well in the return leg. We wanted to contain Madrid but we could have done it in a different way, with more audacity and aggression. We could have caused them problems as we had chances but that’s the way it is,” he said.

One of Galatasaray’s biggest headaches is the absence of key striker Burak Yılmaz, who is suspended after picking up a yellow card in Madrid.

Turkish media reported last week that the Istanbul side had applied to UEFA to have the yellow card annulled, but Galatasaray will also be missing central defender Dany Nounkeu after his booking in Madrid ruled him out.

Ronando goal

Real romped to a 5-1 victory at home to mid-table Levante also on on April 9 as coach Jose Mourinho left several top performers, including forward Cristiano Ronaldo, out of his starting lineup.

Ronaldo came off the bench at halftime with Real leading 2-1 and netted his 29th goal of the La Liga campaign before setting up fellow substitute Mesut Özil.

Center back Sergio Ramos and midfielder Xabi Alonso both played the full 90 minutes as they are suspended for Tuesday’s game. “It could be that we are in our best form of the season,” Ronaldo, top scorer in the Champions League this season with nine goals, told reporters. “We have a complete squad with all the players available and that is very positive news.”

On Tuesday’s game in Istanbul, he added: “It’s a tough match and our passage to the next round is not yet assured. Three goals is a big lead but we have to go there and play and at least get one goal.

“We have to take things step by step, game by game, but I think we have a good chance of getting to the final.”

Kılıçdaroğlu to attend game at stadium

ANKARA - Hürriyet Daily News

Main opposition party leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu will be watching the Galatasaray-Real Madrid game in the company of his wife, Selvi Kılıçdaroğlu, and his daughter Zeynep Kılıçdaroğlu today.

Kılıçdaroğlu wished the best of luck to Galatasaray, as he praised the team’s international success. He said he expected “a ‘lion-like’ game from the Lion,” referring to the official mascot of Galatasaray.

Kılıçdaroğlu will be watching tonight’s match between Galatasaray and Real Madrid competing in the Champions League, at 9:45 p.m. at Türk Telekom Arena in Istanbul, the CHP’s press office announced April 8 in a written statement.

“Even though the rival is Real Madrid, I am expecting a ‘lion-like’ game from the Lion. When the referee will blow his final whistle, when we will leave the field and others leave their televisions, I want every one of us to be happy about the game that was played and say, ‘This is Cim Bom,’” Kılıçdaroğlu said in the statement.

Kılıçdaroğlu, a fan of Fenerbahçe, last week watched his team’s victory against Italy’s Lazio as the two teams played in the Europa League quarterfinal’s first leg.