Galatasaray loses ground in tight league race
ISTANBUL / ANKARA
DHA PhotoGalatasaray lost key two points against Bursaspor Feb. 1 in its race for the top of the standings in a week that rivals Fenerbahçe and Beşiktaş enjoyed narrow wins.
Galatasaray barely snatched the 2-2 draw against Bursaspor at its home Türk Telekom Arena in a matchday 18 game.
Galatasaray scored the opening goal of the game in the 19th minute when target-man Umut Bulut smashed the header in the area after winger Olcan Adın whipped a cross from the left.
Towards the end of the first half, visiting Bursaspor’s Turkish winger Volkan Sen scored the equalizer in the box on a one-on-one; Argentine midfielder Fernando Belluschi made the assist.
In the 53rd minute, Bursaspor came back when their Brazilian striker Fernandao scored from a corner kick, his 12th this season.
With ten minutes to go, Galatasaray were awarded a penalty kick after Volkan Sen was handballing in the box and received a red card. Galatasaray midfielder Emre Çolak converted it successfully.
The “Lions” now stay in third place in the league table, whilst archrivals Fenerbahçe and Beşiktaş each increased the gap at the top.
Earlier in the day, Beşiktaş won against Mersin İdmanyurdu 2-1 in Ankara. Besiktaş midfielder Olcay Şahan scored the leading goal for his team in the 30th minute. Mersin İdmanyurdu replied back with their striker Sinan Kaloğlu, a former Beşiktaş player, in the 61st minute.
Four minutes later Besiktaş’ star forward Demba Ba scored a lucky winning goal for the “Black Eagles,” allowing them to keep following one point behind the league leaders Fenerbahçe, who have netted 42 points already.
Fenerbahçe toppled Kardemir Karabükspor 2-1 in an away match on Jan. 31. Scorers for the defending champions were Turkish midfielder Selçuk Şahin and Nigerian striker Emmanuel Emenike. Kardemir Karabükspor’s single goal was scored by Burkinese Abdou Traore.
Akhisar Belediyespor and Balikesirspor could not break a 2-2 draw on Jan. 30, heating up the struggle at the bottom of the league as Trabzonspor managed to beat SAI Kayseri Erciyesspor 2-1 home.
Istanbul Başakşehir beat Kasımpaşa 1-0 away in rather smaller Istanbul derby game on Jan. 31 as Gaziantepspor suffered a 1-3 loss against Medicana Sivasspor.
Torku Konyaspor beat Eskişehirspor 1-0 as Gençlerbirliği lost 0-2 Çaykur Rizespor on Feb. 1.
Fenerbahçe will face Trabzonspor in the match of the next week, as Beşiktaş will visit Çaykur Rizespor.
Galatasaray will close the week with an Eskişehir away game on Feb. 9.