Trabzonspor fans get Fenerbahce match abandoned


It’s well established that Turkish sides Fenerbahce and Trabzonspor don’t like each other very much, but hostilities reached a new high on Monday night. The home Trabzonspor fans caused their fixture against the Süper Lig leaders to be abandoned after throwing missiles onto the pitch without end.

The referee had already stopped the match twice — once in the 28th minute to allow police to deal with crowd violence and a pitch invader, then again shortly after play restarted — before he was ultimately forced to call the game off before halftime. The unruliness in the stands was simply too much to bear:

According to The Guardian, fans continued to clash with police in the aftermath of the match. The intense rivalry between the two sides started in the fallout of the 2010/11 title race, when Fenerbahce overturned a significant points deficit to steal the championship away from Trabzonspor on goal difference. Fener then became the subject of a high-profile match-fixing investigation that eventually saw club president Aziz Yildirim sent to prison.

Fan violence in the stands is nothing new in Turkish football, but perhaps  Trabzonspor officials should take a page out of their rival’s book and deal their fans an unconventional punishment: only let women and children attend the next home match.


Liverpool could go back for Dnipro winger in summer

Liverpool may have missed out on Yevhen Konoplyanka but that hasn’t put off Brendan Rodgers from thinking about a summer move for the Dnipro winger, according to one of today’s tabloids.

We’ve also got the latest on the future of Newcastle striker Papiss Cisse and of course the build-up to tonight’s big clash between Manchester City and Chelsea. Just click here for more.


Fenerbahce plays match in front of women and children only


Have you ever wondered what a football match looks like with no men in the stands? Well, Fenerbahce found out, and apparently it’s not a big deal. At all.

The Süper Lig leaders banned all male adults for one match after drawing all kinds of negative attention for their expletive-laced chants, but the absence of testosterone clearly didn’t affect the outcome. In fact, the fairer sex may even have helped Fenerbahce’s cause, as the home side ran out easy 4-0 winners against Akhisar Belediye on Friday.

Take a look at the incredible scenes below (image courtesy of 101GG):


Still a larger crowd than half of the teams in Serie A can lay claim to.



And to think, this wasn’t the first time that Fener hosted a match filled with just women and children. Back in 2011, Fener distributed free tickets before a friendly after the Turkish FA banned adult males in result of fan violence during a preseason match against Shakhtar Donetsk.



Laurent Koscielny gets kicked in face, has to leave match

As if Arsenal didn’t have enough personnel problems, center back Laurent Koscielny was kicked in the face by Fenerbahce’s Pierre Webo in the Gunners’ dominant 3-0 away win in Istanbul.

The foul was certainly not Webo’s intention, but the high boot caught Koscielny square in the face, opening up a ghastly cut over his right eye. While Webo received a yellow card, the bloodied defender was forced to leave the match and headed to the hospital. Apparently, it was pretty bad:

According to the Daily Mirror, Arsenal’s physiotherapist Colin Lewin also later told TV it was the worst cut he had ever seen.

Here’s to wishing Koscielny a speedy recovery. Arsenal sure need him. They’ve already lost Mikel Arteta and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain for lengthy injury spells, and the season has only just begun.


Fenerbahce fans try to ruin Arsenal players’ sleep ahead of UCL match

Whenever big competition comes to Istanbul, the rabid local fan bases are almost certain to drum up a storm around the visiting teams’ hotels, looking to interrupt the players’ sleep the night ahead of the matches. To be fair this “tradition” extends to certain fan bases all over the world, but Istanbul can get especially rowdy. For that reason, many clubs usually book two different hotels to try and throw off the troublemakers.

Arsenal, of course, didn’t do that. So after word spread on social media that the Gunners had taken up quarters in Istanbul’s Wyndham Hotel Kalamış, a mob of Fenerbahce fans duly swarmed over there and went to work, shooting dozens of flares and firecrackers into the night.

Amazingly, no Arsenal players were injured.

Of course, the fans’ “support” could all be for nothing. Fenerbahce has been expelled from all UEFA competition this season and is awaiting a decision from the Court of Arbitration for Sport today on their appeal. Should the suspension stand, Arsenal automatically goes through to the Champions League group stage.


Training Ground Collision Leaves Dirk Kuyt a Mess

Dirk Kuyt must have legions of female fans across the world who appreciate his stunning good looks, but they might want to reconsider following a training ground run-in with Dutch teammate Jonathan De Guzman. And by run-in we mean it was like two derailed trains smashing into one another.

Training prior to the Dutch side’s friendly against Portugal this week, the players collided head-on during a drill, making both miss the friendly and perhaps even their club teams’ next match. Poor Dirk Kuyt looks like he came away from it a little worse:



(Via: WAATP)


UEFA Europa League Semifinals

Defending UEFA Champions League winners Chelsea will head to Switzerland to take on FC Basel in the first Europa League semifinal. This is the first time Basel had made a semifinal in any European competition. The other semifinal will see another first time semifinalist Fenerbahce play host to Portugal’s Benfica.

The defending champion Blues have to be considered the favorite, but as we have seen from these competitions in the past, anything can happen.