TODAY’S – Galatasaray faces Arda and Atletico in friendly for Soma victims

Galatasaray faces Arda and Atletico in friendly for Soma victimsNew coach Cesare Prandelliand#39s Galatasaray takes on La Liga champions Atletico Madrid in what is expected to be a highly entertaining friendly that will pit the Spanish cluband#39s Turkish star Arda Turan against his former team for the first time on Wednesday at Izmirand#39s Alsancak Stadium The game kicks off at 9 pmThe match will serve humanitarian purposes as the proceeds will be donated to the families of the victims of the Soma mine tragedy, which occurred on May 13, resulting in the death of 301 miners in western Turkey.After playing five years at Galatasarayand#39s youth team, Arda was promoted to the senior team in 2005 by Romanian coach Gheorghe Hagi and stayed there until 2011 with a one-year spell with fellow Super League side Vestel Manisaspor on loan in the 2005-2006 season.

On his return, it was not long before he became a key player for the coaches of the Istanbul powerhouse. At the beginning of the 2009-2010 season, he was named the captain of the team He has preserved good relations with Galatasaray since his departure, and for the first time in his career he will be playing against the team where he was born as a world football starGalatasaray and Atletico Madrid will meet as part of LFP World Challenge, an organization holding pre-season friendlies for Spanish La Liga teams and other teams from around the globe.

Izmir is the final stop for the defending Spanish champions.Turkish Super League runner-up Galatasaray played three games during its ongoing pre-season training.

Two weeks ago, Galatasaray lost 3-1 to Austrian side Rapid Wien in a friendly where coach Prandelli tried out many different players. Last week the Lions defeated Hungarian top-division side Honved 2-1.

In its first friendly, the Istanbul club defeated Austrian regional league side SK Vorwarts Steyr 3-1.These friendlies are of crucial importance for the unsteady Lions, as the club is dubbed, because they saw a quick rotation of coaches and players in the past few seasons.

Prandelli joined the Lions in early July after former coach Roberto Mancini was sent packing, although he arrived with great hopes following the dismissal of the legendary Fatih andldquothe Emperorandrdquo Terim.

SOURCE: Today’s Zaman