ESRA – Newly crowned Fener faces Akhisar Belediye away in formality match

Newly crowned Fener faces Akhisar Belediye away in formality matchThe Fenerbahe “Yellow Canaries,” who have already secured their spot as the champions, head to Manisa to face Akhisar Belediyespor on Sunday in a match that will have little impact on the crucial spots of the Spor Toto Super League.After Fenerbahe sealed the title with three games to spare following a goalless draw with aykur Rizespor at home, the remaining league games have turned into a mere formality for the Canaries. While the champions are already named, the key races to determine the Champions League and Europa League participants and relegated sides are still wide open and Sunday’s Fenerbahe-Akhisar match will not mean much for the critical spots.The Canaries are likely to receive a hero’s welcome in Manisa, the home of Akhisar Belediyesi the Istanbul club’s championship has created a buzz among its millions of fans across the nation. Fenerbahe’s trophy is ready and waiting for the club in the facilities of the Spor Toto Organization Directorate in Ankara. It is not yet clear when the club will be presented with the trophy.Coach Ersun Yanal might prefer fielding a second-choice lineup in order to give rarely used players a chance to show themselves.The club’s attention is already on the coming season. Despite leading the team to the title, coach Yanal’s future at the club is being questioned as several incidents have raised speculation about the departure of the tactician. Yanal did not attend the championship celebrations of the club in Istanbul last week and the rumors have not been officially denied by the club. In response to a fan’s question on social media on Thursday, Fenerbahe general manager mer Temelli said that Yanal will definitely stay at the club next season.As to the players’ futures, the club wants to extend the contract of winger Caner Erkin, while Brazilian midfielder Cristian Baroni and Swedish midfielder Samuel Holmen will reportedly depart at the end of the season. Defender Michael Kadlec is expected to stay.For Akhisar, this season has almost ended as coach Hamza HamzaoIlu’s men have garnered more points than necessary to keep out of the relegation zone but have only a slim chance of making it to the Europa League by getting into one of the top five spots. Statistically speaking, Akhisar can only get there if Sivasspor or Trabzonspor lose all their games and Akhisar wins all theirs, among other factors. HamzaoIlu told reporters this week that his side will probably fail to realize its dream of earning a berth to the European competitions next season, despite the mathematical possibility.His team was the nightmare of the big-budget Istanbul clubs in the first half of the season, except for Fenerbahe. Having defeated Galatasaray 2-1 and holding BeIiktaI to a 3-3 draw, Akhisar lost 4-0 to Fenerbahe in Istanbul. The western Turkey club hopes to avenge its loss at home.“I don’t know what the club’s starting lineup will be but we’ll be there to win, we’ll do our best,” HamzaoIlu said. “I hope we’ll finish the game with a good result.”Bursaspor entertains Trabzonspor behind closed doorsIn one of the day’s other matches, the Trabzonspor “Black Sea Storm” is pitted against the Bursaspor “Green Crocs.” Trabzonspor, ranked fourth, aims to secure its spot for the European competitions. With its current standing, the Black Sea side is heading to the second-tier Europa League however, it still maintains its slim chance of climbing up the rankings and getting a Champions League ticket — but only if Galatasaray and BeIiktaI stumble badly and Trabzonspor shines in the remaining matches. The club is on a seven-match unbeaten run and won the last two games to tighten its grip on a top spot in the rankings.With three weeks left to until the end of the season, Trabzonspor has lost several players. Ivorian player Didier Zokora’s contract was terminated by mutual agreement after the midfielder was left out of the squad indefinitely by the football team’s technical manager Hami MandIralI. Austrian forward Marc Janko said this week that he wants to leave the team as well, citing his being sidelined as the reason. Portuguese right-back Jose Bosingwa will be missing against Bursaspor due to an injury sustained during a league game last weekend.Bursaspor has only a slim statistical chance of reaching the European competitions. The Green Crocs have drifted ever further from their goals this season after internal turmoil that ended with the departure of German coach Christoph Daum last month. Bursaspor was handed the penalty of playing five matches behind closed doors. The club will serve the first two games of the ban this season. Only women and children fans will be allowed to watch the Trabzonspor match on Sunday.Rizespor vs. Sivasspor in the afternoonAnother Europa League candidate, Sivasspor, is heading to Rize to meet aykur Rizespor on Sunday afternoon. Brazilian coach Roberto Carlos’s Sivasspor is fifth in the league and trailing Trabzonspor with an inferior head-to-head record. Sivasspor would like to maintain its position to make it to the second-level European competition. Sivas’s first-choice goalkeeper Korcan elikay will miss the final games of the season because of an injury.UIur Tutuneker’s Rizespor also aims to win in order to guarantee its position next season in the Super League.

SOURCE: Todays Zaman

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