Turkish Football News

Fenerbahce elect Ali Koc as new president

Fenerbahce elect new president

Fenerbahce have a new club president as of today, after Ali Koc emerged as the winner with a landslide victory.

Super Lig powerhouse Fenerbahce have elected wealthy businessman Ali Koc as the club’s new president.

Turkish businessman Ali Koç accepted congratulations Sunday as he was voted in to become Fenerbahce’s 37th president, replacing Aziz Yildirim, who led the club since 1998.

Polls show Koc won over 77% of the votes.

A total of 20,736 votes were cast from which 16,092 were for Koc while just 4,644 were for Aziz Yildirim.

The new president has vowed to take the club to the next level and will be actively working on increasing the club’s brand worldwide.

Current manager Aykut Kocaman is reported to be close to being sacked with a replacement already lined up.

There has been little challenge to 65-year-old Yildirim’s reign over the last two decades – until Koc, a successful businessman from one of Turkey’s wealthiest families, has garnered strong support within the club.

Born in 1967 in Istanbul, Ali Koc is a well-known Turkish businessman, who has held the vice presidency of the executive board of Koc Holding, a prominent Turkish conglomerate, since February 2016.

Under Yildirim, Fenerbahce has experienced many ups and downs. The president’s battle with the jurisdiction, politicians and fans were always a part of that journey. But Yildirim’s key moment was the fixing scandal in 2011 – which he claims was a malicious plot against Fenerbahçe and led the club’s suspension from the European tournaments.

European football’s governing body UEFA barred Fenerbahçe from European tournaments for two seasons as a result of its investigation in 2013.

Turkey’s match-fixing scandal broke out after the 2010-11 season of the Spor Toto Super Lig, which saw Fenerbahce win the title.

Several important football figures — chairmen, players and board members — were taken into custody over match-fixing and bribery after a legal action was launched in July 2011.

That month, Yildirim was jailed for forming an illegal organization and his involvement in match-fixing in Turkish football’s top division. He was sentenced to six years and three months, of which he served a year.

During his era, Fenerbahce has enlarged and modernized its stadium, Fenerbahçe Sükrü Saracoglu Stadium — also known as Ülker Stadium for sponsorship reasons.

The renovation of the stadium, which boasts a 50,530-seat capacity, was completed in April 2006.

The stadium hosted the 2009 UEFA Cup Final, the last under that name. It was rebranded as UEFA Europa League.

In more than 100 years of existence, Fenerbahce has won 19 Turkish Super Lig titles, six of which came during the Yildirim era.

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