The gap between Süper Lig leaders Galatasaray and second place Fenerbahçe has closed to just 3 points after a pulsating weekend of football in Turkiye.
Despite taking the lead, Galatasaray found themselves on the losing side in their big local derby against Beşiktaş at the Vodafone Stadium on Sunday.
Cimbom’s Argentinian striker Mauro Icardi opened the scoring on the 20th minute before the home side replied with a goal from centre-half Romain Saïss fifteen minutes later.
Beşiktaş took the lead after half-time with a goal from Bosnian defensive midfielder Amir Hadžiahmetović on 58 minutes. Cameroonian international Vincent Aboubakar sealed the victory for the Black Eagles with an injury-time strike.
The 3-1 win keeps Beşiktaş’s slender title hopes alive. They are currently in third position on 65 points, two points behind fellow Istanbul rivals Fenerbahçe and five points behind the league leaders, although the top two have played one fewer game than Beşiktaş.
10-man Fenerbahçe beat Sivasspor
Fenerbahçe, who are chasing hard for their first Süper Lig title in nine years, overcame a tough opponent in Sivasspor to win at the Yeni 4 Eylül Stadium on Saturday despite going down to 10-men at half time.
Diego Rossi netted Fenerbahçe’s sensational first goal after 22 minutes, having picked up the ball on the halfway line before embarking on a 40-yard solo run towards Sivasspor’s goal. The Uruguayan international entered the 18-yard box and calmly sent the ball into the bottom right corner, beyond the reach of the goalkeeper,r to make it 0-1 to the Yellow Canaries.
Ferdi Kadıoğlu doubled the lead for the away side with a simple tap-in a minute into injury time at the end of the first half following a cross from İrfan Kahveci.
Soon after, Kahveci was shown a yellow card, upgraded to red by VAR, for a dangerous tackle on Samu Saiz that had sent the Sivasspor winger flying. But the drama did not end there.
Kadıoğlu scored his second, and Fenerbahçe’s third, ten minutes into injury time before the referee finally blew the whistle for half time.
The hosts bagged a consolation goal in the second half through Jordy Caicedo, but Sivasspor were unable to capitalise on their extra man advantage, the game ending 1-3 to Fenerbahçe.
Final game of season could decide title
The result marked a fifth straight win for Fenerbahçe, taking them to 67 points, 3 points behind Galatasaray, who top the league on 70 points, with six games remaining for both teams.
The title could be decided in the final game of the season when Galatasaray and Fenerbahçe — the two footballing giants of Turkish football — face each other in a rescheduled match at the Nef Stadium on Sunday 4 June.
Main picture, top, Beşiktaş players celebrate after scoring against Galatasaray at the Vodafone Stadium, Istanbul, 30 April 2023. Photo via Twitter/Beşiktaş