Wild Finish in Kadıköy Results in 2-2 Draw
By Nathan L. Redd
Maybe Fenerbahçe should have spent more time scouting Türkiye Lig 1 last season. Newly-promoted İstanbul Büyükşehir Belediyespor has had the Canaries' number this season not once, but twice. The second resulted in a 2-2 draw at Sukru Saracoglu Stadium Sunday evening.
After a long, subpar first half that saw no goals, it appeared that the two sides might be headed toward a scoreless draw. Fenerbahçe reverted back to its mediocre form that it has exhibited in low-profile domestic games, with little emotion or intensity on the pitch. The Canaries played as if a late goal would save them and result in three points, despite coming back from their halftime camp in Antalya. After 74 minutes of stagnant futbol, İstanbul Büyükşehir Belediyespor shocked the home crowd when Ibrahim sent a corner toward the box that was headed in by Ilyas to give the visitors the first goal.
Before the home crowd could get over the shock, İstanbul Büyükşehir Belediyespor would find the back of the net again. IBBSpor's Gokhan put the cross-town side up 2-0 in the 81st minute, leaving the Fener fans wondering what the team had learned during their Antalya camp. However, a wild finish would salvage a point for the home side after a loss seemed imminent with only ten minutes remaining. In the 84th minute, Fener took a corner that saw Wederson send a fantastic shot into the box that Edu Dracena was able to head past the goalkeeper to finally put Fener on the scoreboard. Despite the goal, Fener had only a few minutes remaining to try to find a goal that they couldn't score in the first 84 minutes. Less than three minutes after Edu's goal, Gokhan Gonul sent a beautiful pass through to Deivid de Souza to tie the game at 2-2. The four goals in the final 15 minutes capped a wild finish that saw Fenerbahçe gain a point and stay near the top of the Turkcell Süper Lig standings.
Zico was obviously unhappy with his team's performance after the game. He told Lig TV "Actually I am not very satisfied with my players' performance tonight. We should have achieved more and done better against İstanbul Büyükşehir Belediyespor. Despite this, what I find really positive is that my players did never give up on fighting, but of course we should not lose any more points. From this moment on we have to be more careful than before."
With the draw, Fener slipped into third place in the Turkcell Süper Lig with 38 points. Wins by Sivasspor and Galatasaray keeps the teams in first and second place, respectively. Besiktas's win moves them only one point behind Fener into fourth place in the league.
FENERBAHÇE: Volkan Demirel, Gökhan Gönül, Diego Lugano, Edu Dracena, Roberto Carlos, Deivid de Souza, Mehmet Aurelio, Kemal Aslan (substituted by Colin Kazım-Richards MIN. 60 ), Uğur Boral (substituted by Gokcek Wederson MIN. 60 ), Ali Bilgin (substituted by İlhan Parlak MIN. 73 ), Semih Senturk
İSTANBUL BÜYÜKŞEHİR BELEDİYESPOR: Hasagiç, Murat, Volkan, Efe (substituted by Mahmut MIN. 86), Erman (substituted by İbrahim Akın MIN. 57 ), İlyas, Tjikuzu, Kerim, Cesario, Sertan (substituted by Aydın MIN. 78 ), Gökhan Kaba
(photos courtesy of Hurriyet)