Whether there’s enthusiastic Turkish support or not, the Europa League games will take place this evening as scheduled by UEFA.
The Black Eagles, under normal circumstances, should have no problem whatsoever giving obscure Alania a sound beating. But the fact of the matter is that conditions are far from normal due to the ongoing match-rigging drama. The players, under the care of Portuguese coach Carlos Carvalhal, are highly distracted, and concentration will certainly be a major issue. Carvalhal therefore will need all his powers of motivation to boost team confidence. The Black Eagles, as Turkish Cup holders, did not take part in the qualifying round. And with the domestic Super League still on its summer holiday, the Beşiktaş players have not really been tested yet. The Eagles will also be missing the services of Portuguese playmaker Ricardo Quaresma, who is serving a three-match suspension after he was red-carded in last season’s Europa League match against Ukraine’s Dinamo Kiev in İstanbul. Newly sig-ned Brazilian stopper Sidnei Rechel da Silva Junior, or simply Sidnei, was not included in the team roster that was sent to UEFA, and he also will be not be present today. Other noticeable absentees will include injured midfielder Necip Uysal, Australian-born Ersan Adem Gülüm and Brazilian newcomer Tiago Manuel Dias Correia, aka Bebe, who suffered a serious knee injury during the recent Brazil-Slovakia U-21 friendly and will be out for at least six months.