One killed, 122 detained in football tensions, title celebrations delayed
ISTANBUL / IZMIR
Göztepe fans clashed with police after the fabled İzmir club lost a deciding game and was relegated to Turkish football’s third tier. DHA photoA supporter was stabbed to death and more than 100 fans were detained on May 12 as the violence peaks at the end of the Turkish football season.
A Fenerbahçe fan was stabbed to death late on the night of May 12, hours after his club beat Galatasaray 2-1 in Turkey’s most famous sporting derby.
Burak Yıldırım, 19, was killed by unknown assailants in the Eyüp district of Istanbul at around 11 p.m. on May 12 after attending his team’s Spor Toto Super League derby against Galatasaray at the Şükrü Saracoğlu Stadium, Anatolia news agency said.
Yıldırım had taken the metrobus with his friends on his way home before being stabbed. He was taken to Bezmialem University Medicine Faculty in Fatih, but could not be saved.
Istanbul police have started an investigation to identify the assailants.
Galatasaray announced that it has canceled this weekend’s title celebrations initially scheduled after the May 18 Spor Toto Super League game against Trabzonspor.
The club said it postponed the championship celebrations for the start of next year due to the explosions that killed 49 people in the Reyhanlı district of Hatay, and “football terror that took the life of Burak Yıldırım.”
Fenerbahçe sports club released a condolence statement for the 19-year-old fan.
“We have learned with deep sorrow that our supporter Burak Yıldırım was brutally murdered by a group at the Edirnekapı Metrobus station,” the statement read. “With the fact that terror has no color in mind, we state that we will follow this fatal incident and we send our condolences to Burak Yıldırım’s family and our community.”
The event followed a tense derby game that ended in a 2-1 win for Fenerbahçe.
The result of the game had virtually no effect on the standings, with Galatasaray having already clinched the league and Fenerbahçe almost assured of the runner-up spot.
Despite the nature of the match, the game was tense as usual, with Fenerbahçe goalkeeper Volkan Demirel and Galatasaray wing back Sabri Sarıoğlu being sent off for fighting on the pitch in the last minute of the match.
Meanwhile, Göztepe fans clashed with police after the fabled İzmir club lost a deciding game and was relegated to Turkish football’s third tier.
İzmir police detained 30 fans after Göztepe fans rushed to the pitch and continued to fight with police outside the stadium after the game.
Göztepe lost 1-0 to Tavşanlı Linyitspor in a key game in the PTT League One relegation battle.
Fans directed their anger at club chairman İmam Altınbaş, who barely managed to escape the stadium with the help of another group of fans, Doğan news agency reported.
Göztepe fans attacked the club building and the training facilities after the game, and police intervened with tear gas and pressurized water.
The crowd was only dispersed after three hours of clashes with police.
Göztepe coach Kemal Kılıç, meanwhile, fainted after the final whistle and was hospitalized. Kılıç had a bypass operation in November last year.