Turkish Football News

Former Besiktas manager Bilic speaks about Super Lig

Slaven Bilic besiktas champions

Slaven Bilic sat down with BeIN Sports and answered some questions about his time in Turkey.

Former Besiktas manager Slaven Bilic, who is well-regarded among Besiktas fans, gave his predictions on the Turkish Super Lig title race and spoke of his time as manager in Turkey. Below are the responses he gave to the questions presented;

You have worked in Turkey and there are also a significant number of people who love you. How would you describe your time there?

“Turkey, the people there, the mentality, I love it. Their mentality is very similar to Croatian mentality. Istanbul is a very beautiful city and Besiktas with its 20 million supporters is a big club. A giant club. Of course, so are Galatasaray and Fenerbahace. But Besiktas have very special fans. I have great memories with them. Because the current new stadium was being built, we had to play our home games in Ankara. This meant one hour flight every home game. But my time with Besiktas, it’s probably 2 of the most fun years in my life.”

A lot English Premier League players are transferring to the Turkish Super Lig. Do you think this increases the global value of the league?

“Everything has a price. Before, players after 30 would go to Turkey, just like in Russia, however now the players are coming at a younger age. Because they are paying them well. At the same time, the Super Lig has improved. As you know, Besiktas qualified from their Champions League group as group winners. Financially, they doing fine, too. But it’s not just this. In Turkey, I think 15,16 maybe 20 even, new stadiums were built. That is incredible. The league is difficult and challenging. Most people think it will be Besiktas, Fenerbahce or Galatasaray but there are no easy matches. Especially the away games. But is this reflected in the national team? No. As you know, they won’t be in the World Cup again. There are very strong players but again we are talking about players who are in their late years like Emre and Burak Yilmaz. Unfortunately, if Besiktas, Fenerbahce, Galatasaray, Trabzonspor and Basaksehir continue to field 10 foreign players, this will be the price you pay.”

You mentioned the league being challenging. At the moment, 4 teams are fighting for the title. Who do you think will come out victorious?

“Besiktas, I hope. But because they were champions for the last two seasons plus their Champions League games, they might struggle. When you watch Basaksehir, you can see how quality of a team they are. They have someone like Adebayor. They loaned Arda Turan from Barcelona. They have Elia and Emre. Galatasaray have Fatih Terim. Fenerbahce is also fighting for it. I think the winners will be decided by a 4,5, or6 point difference. I’m not sure who will win.”

At the moment, you are unemployed. Of course, you are getting offers. Do you have plans to finish unfinished business in Turkey? Do you have the desire to work there again?

“I need to take a break now and rest until I’m ready again. I will decide for myself at the end of the season. Because if I work somewhere right now, I will not have enough time to catch a rhythm until the end of the season. I will wait for the start of the new season to decide. I hope the right offer will come to me.”

What is your preference? Germany, England or Turkey?

“I’ve worked and played in many countries. I was in the Premier League in England and I really enjoyed the adventure. Turkey was truly impressive. Everything was so beautiful there. This is not about the country, however. It depends on what kind of proposal the club makes, the project they have. It’s never about the country.”

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