Amid an ongoing match-fixing scandal that has caused much chaos in the world of Turkish football and is unlikely to be concluded in the foreseeable future, top names, including former Minister of Trade Kürşat Tüzmen, a close aide to Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, have announced they will run for the top position at the Turkish Football Federation (TFF) two weeks after former TFF head Mehmet Ali Aydınlar resigned.
Demirören announced his candidacy during a Beşiktaş executive committee meeting on Monday, the last day for announcing candidacy to fill the vacant seat left by Aydınlar. Demirören officially submitted his application with the TFF later in the day for the federation’s top post.
Most of the clubs of the first division backed his candidacy expressing their support during the day.
Along with Demirören, former Trade Minister Kürşad Tüzmen, also announced that he is up to the task and will run for the TFF presidency.
Turkish football has been in deep crisis since last summer and the resignation of Aydınlar, who refrained from making fundamental decisions relating to the match-fixing scandal, made things even more complicated and murkier. Falling short of solving the crisis regarding the penalties imposed on clubs and individuals implicated in the unprecedented match-rigging scandal, Aydınlar and his two deputies quit on Feb. 1.
The TFF is set to elect a new president at a meeting scheduled for next Monday. Former TFF head Haluk Ulusoy withdrew his candidacy, saying that if the first division clubs agreed on a single candidate he would not run for the presidency in response to calls from the Union of Clubs, which convened one week after Aydınlar’s resignation to discuss the future of Turkish football.
Turkey’s top division football clubs have agreed to support a new face in the upcoming presidential elections for the TFF, sending signals to former presidents not to run for the post.
In addition, Turkish-Indian Business Council Vice President Erdal Alkış announced that he will run for the presidency.