Turkish Football News

Galatasaray closing in on title

Galatasaray are closing in on the title and history favours them.

Galatasaray are the favourite to be crowned Turkish Super Lig champions this season and history is on their side.

With just three matches to go, Galatasaray overcame its biggest hurdle toward the Turkish Super Lig title as it beat Besiktas 2-0 Sunday. Previous records suggest that the Lions do not have a habit of losing matches in the last three weeks when they lead the table.

Since the three points system was adopted in Turkish football leagues in 1987, Galatasaray has won the title on all 10 occasions when it entered the final three weeks as the league leader. The seasons include: 1987-88, 1993-94, 1996-97, 1997-98, 1998-99, 1999-00, 2001-02, 2011-12, 2012-13 and 2014-15.

Six of these titles – 1996-97, 1997-98, 1998-99, 1999-00, 2011-12, and 2012-13 – were won under current coach Fatih Terim, who is leading Galatasaray for a fourth term. With Sundays win against Besiktas, Galatasaray has 66 points and it will meet minnows Akhisarspor, Yeni Malatyaspor and Göztepe in the last three weeks of the Super Lig. Galatasaray has also been the most successful team at home this season. It secured 46 of 48 points, winning 15 of their 16 home matches, at the Türk Telekom Stadium.

On the other hand, Besiktas’ title hopes were left in tatters after the defeat against archrival Galatasaray. The Black Eagles are now sitting fourth with 62 points. Istanbul Basaksehir is in second place with 65 points and third-placed Fenerbahçe has 63. Under these circumstances, Besiktas can only hope its rivals drop points as it faces Kayserispor, Osmanlispor and Sivasspor in the last three matches. However, the Istanbul side is bogged down by the injuries of Caner Erkin, Alvaro Negredo and Pepe, while Dusko Tosic is serving a ban.

Besiktas has had a poor run on the road this season, winning only six of its 16 away matches. It drew and lost five matches each. It also lost the away matches against its title rivals Galatasaray, Istanbul Basaksehir and Fenerbahçe.

Meanwhile, Fenerbahçe has demanded that all title candidates play on the same day, at the same hour, given the tight title race. Fenerbahçe will play against Bursaspor, already relegated Karabükspor and Atiker Konyaspor in the weeks to come, while Basaksehir will face Sivasspor, relegation-threatened Antalyaspor and Kasimpasa.

Source: DailySabah

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