Thursday, September 13, 2007

Caykur Rizespor Hopes to Catch Fener Looking Ahead

Caykur Rizespor Hopes to Catch Fener Looking Ahead
By Nathan L. Redd

As sports betting websites set the line for Saturday's Fenerbahce vs. Caykur Rizespor match, most won't give the Tea Men much of a chance in Kadikoy. However, Rizespor knows that Fenerbahce often plays their worst futbol when they're looking ahead. The Rize side are coming to Istanbul quietly, hoping everyone overlooks them with the UEFA Champions League on the horizon.

Zico's challenge this weekend will be to get his men to focus and give 100% effort against Rizespor. Italian giants Inter Milan loom on the schedule next week, and it's no secret that the players are focused on European glory in the UEFA Champions League. That's exactly what Safet Susic is hoping for. The Bosnian Rizespor manager knows that his team's best chance for a win involves Fener worrying too much about Inter Milan and forgetting about his side.

Fenerbahce has been a team of mystery at times over the last few years. They often tend to play well against top competition, but tend to drop points to teams they should defeat easily. Denizlispor, Istanbul Buyuksehir Belediyespor, and Genclerbirligi OFTASSpor know this all too well. Fenerbahce is determined to achieve success in the UEFA Champions League, but they must focus on acquiring points in the Turkcell Super Lig or there will be no return trip next year. As well as Fenerbahce has played in the past against top-notch European teams, they've often stooped to the lower level of some Super Lig teams while looking past them.

Fenerbahce currently sits in sixth place in the Turkcell Super Lig with seven points. Caykur Rizespor is second from the bottom with only three points after four games. No one is giving the Tea Men much of a chance on Saturday, and the Turkish media is talking more about Inter Milan than Fener's Turkish opponents. That's quite alright with Safet Susic, however. He's hoping no one talks about his team...until after the final whistle Saturday night.

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