So its 12 Celsius, sunny and a bit windy and its the 24th December here in New Jooisy. what the hell is this, where is the snow, where is the ass-freezing, brass monkey affecting, cold weather!!!!! The Husband is not complaining he's out on his bike making room for the turkey and potatoes but me I just think there is something wrong about having nice weather at this time of year, unless you are in the Southern Hemisphere of course where Christmas is spent with a barbecue and a cold beer!!!!
No real football to talk about as the Turkish season is of course in hibernation until the real bad weather starts in mid January in Turkey. I do not count the Fortis Cup as that seems to be a tournament for the reserve teams at the moment. Of course if Galatasaray win it will be a different matter, like a couple of seasons ago when we won with the 5-1 thrashing of the hooligans.
So I am being forced to watch all the EPL games and even some rugby. IN the US footie is transmitted by Fox Soccer Channel which covers the EPL, French, German and yawn Italian leagues where you play spot the crowd. Then there is Setanta who also provides the missing EPL games as well as rugby, ozzie rules and various other odd games. So we spent all Saturday watching the EPL but today nothing!!!!!! What to do???? Luckily there is a James Bondathon on Spike TV today so thats sorted along with Sponge Bob!!!!
Actually I am glad the weather is good as taking the dogs for a walk can be a problem when it snows. We recently had a fence put around the yard though so when the weather is bad we can just let them in the yard.
So its Saturday night and Galatasaray beat Kayserispor in the Turkish Cup and now what!!!
No Super Lig until January guess I will have to watch all the English PL games. Not that I don't already but there will be no sanity break, in the unending display of bling, shaved heads and money for a few weeks.
Actually right now I am watching the NBA, New Jersey Nets and Detroit Pistons. Unfortunately I rarely get to see Orlando or Utah! I sometimes also get to see the Euroleague and have seen Efes Pilsen play.
Why I hear you ask? Well that's who Hidayet (Hedo) Turkoglu and Mehmet Okur play for and whilst I appreciate Jason Kidd et al I would rather watch the Turkish Players. I know I never mentioned basketball before but I have always had an interest in basketball and years ago, pre-Husband, dated a guy who played for Galatasaray in the Turkish League. Had to use an orange box to kiss him!!!
Here in NJ the weather is far from December, in fact its more like April! Won't last of course but we are making the most of it. Had a fence put up in the yard recently so that we can let the dogs out whenever we want without them running off. This will be important when its snowing horizontally!
Both the husband and I have been enjoying some Winter Ale from Weyerbacher. One good thing about living in the US is that it has more breweries than any other country, although the consumption per head is not that high. Weyerbacher is about a one hour drive from where we live and they make some excellent beers. Apologies to all those in Turkey who unless they can get to Taps in Istanbul do not exactly have a large choice of beers, not that theres anything wrong with Efes of course but sometimes variety is nice!!!
So enough for tonight, Sunday brings Chavski and then the Man Utd game so thats the day sorted!!!!!
So the Kadikoy mob got through to the next round of the UEFA Cup albeit with 7 minutes to spare!!! Good job too so that the Turkish League gains some points for the next seasons. If it wasn't for that fact I would definitely have not been supporting them.
Given the recent poor performances of Turkish teams in Europe I am not exactly holding my breath for their long term involvement though. Lets face it any team that loses to Newcastle United cannot be that special as the Geordies are not exactly setting the EPL alight this season.
Next up is Besiktas and here's hoping that they also get through so the SECOND city crowd might, just might get a sniff of Euro footie next season when they finish below the first city teams (as usual)!!!
One other good thing is that with hopefully both the other Istanbul teams involved in the UEFA then they may get a bit stretched and leave the door open for another successful domestic season for Galatasaray. It also of course depends on how many players leave Kadikoy in January as it seems that a few are wanted by other clubs, especially Appiah, Alex, Tuncay etc.
Not quite a vintage performance today more a shocker actually but 3 points is 3 points. Beating Bursaspor 3-1 was a result but should have been a bit easier than it actually was.
The first half was appalling, absolutely terrible...the defence was poor, the midfield non-existent and the attack barely functional. In addition the inept performance of the referee was not helping either team I mean there were three fairly clear penalty situations in the first half, one for Bursa and two for GS which he failed to notice, the one on Ergun being particularly blatant.
At least the second half was better from GS although it simply could not have been any worse than the first. Mondragon kept us in the match at times with a few excellent saves and the three goals were well taken even if Okan's was a bit fortunate. Sabri's goal was the best of the lot running the length of the pitch and chipping over the keeper, excellent.
So its into the winter break in second place, 7 points behind the Kadikoy mob. Sound familiar well it should as it was the same situation last season and we all know what happened then!!!
Of course there may be a lot of changes before the league restarts not least of which may be a new coach, I hope not but lets see what hasty badly informed decision the board makes. There may be some new players as we badly need an improved defence for the second half of the season and a holding midfielder, Saidou is badly missed.
Anyway now all I will be watching is the EPL where money bags Chavski are not having it all their own way this year, thankfully with teams standing up to them for once.
So Galatasaray won a meaningless game 3-2 against Liverpool tonight. Although they won, the usual problems surfaced especially with the defnece whihc has been the weak spot all this season. Lets hope the management recruit a couple of players in the January transfer window.
I also note from the Turkish media that Gerets is on his way out and that the short list includes Co Adriaanse, Ersun Yanal and unbelievably Graham Souness. So last season we won the championship and this season Gerets is not good enough despite not being able to recruit new players whihc is hardly his fault and then the board decide to play the European ames at the Olympic Stadium!!! Idiots.
Talking of idiots lets see whether the TFF have grown any testicles at all in dealing with the appalling behaviour of the Kadikoy mobs so called supporters during the derby match. It seems like all other teams get penalised if their supporters swear but for the Kadikoy lot no such penalties seem to apply. Whilst you can expect no better from the rubbish that passes as management over there and the crap that turns up at games with smoke bombs HOW the hell did such an object get smuggled in, one can only assume the polis are also on the payroll.
Forget whether GS should have had a penalty for the clear handball in the second half why was the match even going on after the smoke bomb incident. Selcuk Dereli should have had more concern for the safety of the players as obviously it cannot be guaranteed by the Kadikoy morons and the game should have been stopped. How embarrasing is it for the manager of the opponents to turn up with stitches in his head after being it by thrown objects.
Forget about fines and closed stadiums there is only one correct sanction for this, points deduction and blocks on transfer activity into the club like Roma recieved last season.
Well here it isn't. What should have been a pulsating emotion filled evening in the cauldron that is Ali Sami Yen is going to be a meaningless affair played out in the echoing wastelands of the Olympic stadium. My goodness who would have thought when the groups were drawn that this would be the outcome. I thought we should at least have qualified for the UEFA cup and I guess we still can if we win about 6-0 and Bordeaux lose unless its done head to head when it is a truly meaningless game!!!!
From reports it seems that both teams will be effectively fielding reserve teams so I guess Hasan and Hakan will get games for once. Oh how the mighty have fallen!!!!!
With the lack of success in Europe it is getting harder and harder for Turkish teams to qualify and when they do they do nothing. It seems thath all teams want to do is win the Super LIg and have no other ambition. If it carries on like this we can expect to get headlines such as Stuffed Turkeys again when the National Team play becaues thie eventual lack of success will affect the National team.
Now I know that some countries have successful National Teams without strong National leagues or occasional strong teams, Norway, Denmark, Sweden immediately spring to mind. However when you look at where the plpayers earn their money most do it outside of their country in the EPL especially and elsewhere around Europe. In turkey however we have only one player in the EPL, Emre, a couple in the Bundesliga, one in Spain when he's not injured and that's pretty much it. Okay you say then we use home based players. Look at the rosters and Fenerbahce for example have not that many national level Turkish players (Tuncay excluded) as they rely on imports, Galatasaray have a few such as Arda coming through the ranks and the rest are playing for??????????
When its the 88th minute in Kadikoy apparently. My goodness I think the referee was probably the only person who thought Turaci's use of the elbow to deflect the ball away from Hasan Kabze was not a deliberate handball. I challenge any of the Kadikoy mobs rabble out there to justify otherwise, if you do then you obviously cannot be a true football supporter. Plus Alex, what a diving complaining cheat.
Anyway it was the typical game of two halves. Galatasary were definitely second best in the first half but were by far the better side in the second half and created virtually all the chances with Umit and Necati denied by Volkan. Despite the loss it was good to see Galatsasaray play some better football, which is a good sign for the rest of the season.
Unfortunately it means there is now 9 points gap at the top of the Lig but think back to last season it was somewhat the same so it does not mean the seaons is over but some of the other teams have got to step up and kick the budgies off their perch.
So tomorrow the match is in Kadikoy against the budgies. Seems like the media and all the kadikoy mob are hypeing this up to be THE MOST IMPORTANT MATCH OF THE SEASON. What a laugh. To be honest with you I am not worried about the result of the game at all.
This may be surprising and I will explain why.
Given the money that the Kadikoy mob have spent over the last couple of seasons just being able to compete with them is a minor miracle. Given the disparity in finances winning the championship last season was an incredible result which was probably a one off. The desperation to win anything is flowing out of the FB camp so obviously that all the other teams and supporters can feel it.
It is my belief that all the pressure is on them, not Galatasaray. If they don't win easily then that is an indictment on the team, manager and money spent. If Galatasaray can get some kind of result then I will be happy as it will keep the points to a sensible number. However give the run of results in the last few years Galatasaray will be lucky to get anything at all. Hence no stress for me.
I must say I am really glad that I do not support Trabzon, what happened to them. I mean they started off poorly and then get worse when they sacked the foreigner and brought Ziya Dogan. I am hoping they can improve as the wheels fell off the Vestel wagon, the second city teams are inconsistent as are Besiktas. Otherwise the Turkish league will become weaker and weaker as the Kadikoy mob simply buy their way to success!!