26 June 2012 /TODAY’S ZAMAN
Sports Minister Suat Kılıç is claiming that statements which appeared in Turkish media on Monday concerning Beşiktaş’s potential use of Türk Telekom Arena, home to Galatasaray, regardless of Galatasaray’s objections, were not made by him.
Issuing a statement on Tuesday, Kılıç said he always discusses the problems of Turkish football with the clubs peacefully and that the recent media reports about him are untrue. The media reported that Kılıç said Beşiktaş can play at Türk Telekom Arena if he gives the order but that he prefers the problem be solved by way of a compromise. Beşiktaş is looking for a stadium for next season’s games while its İnönü Stadium undergoes reconstruction, and the Türk Telekom Arena appears to be the most probable option. However Galatasaray managers, including Chairman Ünal Aysal, expressed their disapproval. In a related development, Beşiktaş Chairman Fikret Orman said the stadium controversy will be settled following a visit with the various sports bodies in Ankara later this week. Orman said the stadiums are affiliated with the Youth and Sports General Directorate, not owned by individuals, hinting that Galatasaray’s efforts to keep Beşiktaş away from the arena might be in vain.