Turkish football coach attacked by fans after trainer’s anti-ISIL tweets
İsmail Er / Ahmet Ercanlar ISTANBUL
A group of Sarıyer supporters attacked coach Turhan Özyazanlar on Oct. 14 outside the club’s facilities as he was trying to defend trainer Erdal Elgörmüş (L).The coach of Sarıyer, a third-division football team headquartered on Istanbul’s Bosphorus, was beaten by fans after the team’s goalkeeper trainer posted messages on social media decrying atrocities committed by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) in Kobane.
A groups of Sarıyer supporters attacked coach Turhan Özyazanlar on Oct. 14 outside the club’s facilities as he was trying to defend trainer Erdal Elgörmüş.
Ergörmüş, who was born in the Kurdish-dominated southeastern province of Diyarbakır, shared Facebook posts in favor of the Kurdish forces and standing against ISIL’s advance on Kobane, a Syrian town by the Turkish border.
Fans reacted negatively to the posts, asking Sarıyer’s management to remove Ergörmüş from duty. The attack on Özyazanlar at the club’s facilities came after the club’s management rejected the supporters’ demand to discharge Ergörmüş.
Özyaranlar was taken to hospital after the attack.
Özyazanlar said he had no connection to politics and had been unfairly attacked. “I am ashamed to be on the agenda with such an issue. This situation devastates me. Everyone should respect each other no matter what line of politics they come from. I don’t have any connections to politics, I’m a sportsman,” he said.
Country-wide protests against the ISIL attack on Kobane and Ankara’s policies on the issue were held last week, leaving at least 35 dead and hundreds wounded.
Özyazanlar, who has headed many teams in the second and third divisions, clinched his third league title with Diyarbakır Büyükşehir Belediyespor in 2013, leading the underdogs to the top of the Turkish second division, one year before becoming a runner-up in the Turkish first division.