Turkish sides may ditch Europe, Beşiktaş chief says
ISTANBUL- Hürriyet Daily News
Yıldırım Demirören says Turkish clubs must ‘unite’ in tackling the match-fixing case. DHA photoBeşiktaş and Union of Clubs Chairman Yıldırım Demirören claims Turkish teams should even consider ditching European football for a few years in order to leave behind the match-fixing case.
“We should get rid of our jerseys and unite to tackle this problem as a whole,” Demirören was quoted by the daily Akşam yesterday. “We make our decisions and wait for the judicial process to end. Let the judges decide on the case,” he said.
“No Turkish teams will participate to the European competitions, if that is necessary.”
Demirören’s remarks came at the end of a week when the Turkish Football Federation (TFF) rejected a proposal by the Union, which suggested the relegation penalty on rigging case to be withheld for this occasion. At least eight teams are listed as suspects of allegedly match-fixing and risk being relegated from the top flight.
The TFF is to apply sanctions on the teams while the judicial process is ongoing, but Demirören and a group in the Union of Clubs call for more time, while a group led by Galatasaray criticizes the slow pace of the national football’s governing body.
“[Galatasaray] is playing for the crowds. Are they clean as a whistle?” Demirören criticized. “Are they not a part of Turkish sport? Let’s become mature and get rid of our jerseys.”
During the convention where the voting was held, Demirören, the biggest supporter of TFF Chairman Aydınlar, signaled that the administration could be changed as well.
“He is a perfect man and has every good intention,” Demirören said. “But I warned him not to go to the General Convention. I knew he could have been damaged.”
A day earlier, the daily Akşam quoted Aydınlar as saying “I will probably quit soon.”
During the convention, Demirören called for unity, saying that a vote of confidence could be made soon, implying that Aydınlar’s administration could come to the end of its term. Several media outlets suggest Aydınlar will call a press meeting early this week to announce his decision.