Galatasaray, Fenerbahçe falter in Süper Lig

Galatasaray, Fenerbahçe falter in Süper Lig

Galatasaray, Fenerbahçe falter in Süper Lig

Turkish Süper Lig title hopefuls Galatasaray and Fenerbahçe suffered their first defeats of the season over the weekend while defending champion Beşiktaş stayed atop the standings on goal difference.

Galatasaray was handed a 1-0 defeat at home by Alanyaspor on Sept. 19, with the visiting side’s Portuguese winger Daniel Candeias scoring the winner in the 87th minute.

Fenerbahçe lost 2-0 on Sept. 19 at Başakşehir, which recorded its first points of the season, while Beşiktaş beat Antalyaspor 3-2 in an away match on Sept. 18.

Stefano Okaka scored the opener for Başakşehir in the 16th minute at the Fatih Terim Stadium in Istanbul and Fredrik Gulbrandsen doubled the lead in the 90th minute.

Beşiktaş, on the other hand, needed to work hard for a win in Antalya after Haji Wright and Veysel Sarı scored in the last three minutes of the first half to give the home side a 2-0 lead.

The defending champion completely dominated the second half as Rıdvan Yılmaz, Michy Batshuayi and Rachid Ghezzal put their names on the scoresheet for a stunning comeback win.

The league competition will continue with mid-week games, with Beşiktaş hosting Adana Demirspor on Sept. 21 and Sept. 22’s games pitting Galatasaray against Kayserispor in an away match.

Trabzonspor, which sits in the second spot on goal difference following Sept. 18’s 1-0 win at Kasımpaşa, visits Konyaspor on Sept. 23 as Fenerbahçe plays Giresunspor at home.

Galatasaray coach Fatih Terim noted that playing in a hectic schedule has affected his players.

“For the sake of stability, I fielded the same team to our third match in a week,” he said. “It seems like that the team needed rotation, I’m sorry we lost.”

The experienced coach was also disappointed by his team’s supporters’ negative reaction against some players.
“We are at the beginning of the road, we are only in September,” he said.

“Our fans are our most important weapon, but if such reaction happens, it will turn against us. [DeAndre] Yedlin was booed after a back pass in the 30th minute. I do not understand this. Cursing at Ömer [Bayram], booing [Ryan] Babel... What’s going on? I know that everyone is a coach on social media, but we cannot win these players back with such reaction,” he added.

Fenerbahçe coach Vitor Pereira also said last week’s Europa League match had its toll on his players.

“It was a game that required a lot of concentration, and after the match, my players were tired because of traveling and sleeping less,” he said.

“We were on the field physically, but we were not there mentally,” the Portuguese added. “We couldn’t make the right reactions and decisions.”

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