Fenerbahçe clears first Super Final hurdle with relative ease

(Photo: Today's Zaman)

April 16, 2012, Monday/ 12:37:00

The Fenerbahçe-Trabzonspor Super Final opener at FB Şükrü Saracoğlu Stadium in Kadıköy on Sunday evening was expected to be a rough-and-tumble encounter, with the grass bearing the brunt of the action.

The victory upped Fenerbahçe's unbeaten league run at Şükrü Saracoğlu to 41 games -- 34 wins and seven draws. Şenol Güneş's Black Sea Storm could not match the Canaries head for head, shoulder for shoulder, speed for speed, stamina for stamina or strength for strength, and so defeat was unavoidable

However, it turned out to be a very easy match for the Yellow Canaries -- as Fenerbahçe is called in football circles --who scored a goal in each half to win 2-0 and beat Trabzonspor for the second time in three meetings this season.

The Yellow Canaries won 1-0 at home in the first half of the regular Spor Toto Super League season and drew 1-1 away in the second half.

Brazilian midfielder Cristian Baroni opened the scoring for Fenerbahçe in the 36th minute, hitting a cracker of a shot from outside the box after receiving a perfect pass from compatriot Alex de Souza.

Fener could have scored a bagful of goals, but its attacking force, led by Senegal striker Moussa Sow, missed and missed, and the Canaries had to make do with a slim 1-0 advantage at the end of the first half.

The second was almost a carbon copy of the first as Şenol Güneş's men still could not match the Canaries head for head, shoulder for shoulder, speed for speed, stamina for stamina or strength for strength.

Worst still, there was no coherence between Trabzon's midfield and defense or midfield and attack. Therefore, defeat for Trabzonspor, or the Black Sea Storm, was unavoidable.

And so it came to pass. Man of the match Baroni was also the architect of the second goal. He dispossessed Trabzonspor's Argentine midfielder Gustavo Colman in the 61st and raced with the ball toward the Trabzon box before sending a superb pass to unmarked Senegal striker Moussa Sow, who made no mistake in finding the back of the net. And the final score was: Fenerbahçe 2, Trabzonspor 0.

“We had to win in order to keep the pressure on Galatasaray,” coach Aykut Kocaman said in his post-match news conference. “And we did so with two goals. Now we are looking forward to the match against Galatasaray [at TT Arena this weekend].”

The victory upped Fenerbahçe's unbeaten league run at Şükrü Saracoğlu to 41 games -- 34 wins and seven draws. The Canaries have not tasted defeat in the league at home since they were beaten 3-2 in week 22 of the 2009-10 season by eventual champion Bursaspor on Feb. 22, 2010.

“Our play and the score were not worthy of Trabzonspor,” said coach Güneş. “We lost too much control of the ball and also lost our discipline after conceding the second goal. Simply put, we had a bad day,” he lamented.

To compound matters for Trabzonspor, star striker and goal king Burak Yılmaz suffered a fractured nose and was taken to Acıbadem Hospital for urgent treatment after the match. He is expected to be discharged on Tuesday.

Trabzonspor hosts Beşiktaş this weekend behind closed doors and so will be relying on the support of women and children in the stands since all adult men are barred.

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