Besiktas vs Antalyaspor: In-depth preview, predictions & possible starting lineups – Elneny expected to feature

ISTANBUL, TURKEY - OCTOBER 03: Besiktas fans cheer during the UEFA Europa League group K match between Besiktas and Wolverhampton Wanderers at Vodafone Park on October 03, 2019 in Istanbul, Turkey. (Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)

Besiktas take on Antalyaspor at the Vodafone Park Stadium on Saturday hoping to close the gap with the top four.

The Super Lig is expected to go ahead as scheduled despite the coronavirus outbreak.

The Turkish league is currently the only European league still running and unless there is a last-minute change the 27th round of games will go ahead.

Considering many of you will be following the Turkish top-flight for the first time with football elsewhere suspended we have put together in-depth previews for every game this week.

READ: Turkish league will not be suspended despite coronavirus outbreak says federation president, all games will resume without fans until end of April

Besiktas Team News

Besiktas will be without Dorukhan Tokoz, Douglas, Gokhan Gonul due to injury. Burak Yilmaz meanwhile, will miss the clash as he is suspended.

Kevin Prince Boateng is an injury doubt but has not been ruled out.

Besiktas have looked a rejuvenated side since Sergen Yalcin replaced Abdullah Avci in February.

The Black Eagles have not lost just one game with Yalcin in charge.

With Yilmaz out Umut Nayir could return to the starting lineup. The 25-year-old is a completely different striker to Yilmaz.

Yilmaz relies on his pace and movement in contrast to Nayir who is a tall, old fashioned, physical striker who can be used as a target man and to hold up play.

We could also see Jeremain Lens start with Adam Ljajic filling in behind the striker in a No 10 role.

Liverpool loanee Loris Karius is almost certain to start in goal after keeping a clean sheet in the Istanbul derby against Galatasaray.

Karius seemed more relaxed without the pressure of the fans and put on a stellar display.

Domagoj Vida will most likely be joined by Ruiz in defence with Caner Erkin as left-back and Gokhan Gonul on the right – if match fit.

The midfield is likely to include Arsenal loanee Mohamed Elneny and Canada international veteran Atiba Hutchinson.

The midfield duo are the backbone of this Besiktas side. They keep everything ticking, provide a shield in front of the center-backs and are responsible for transitions from defence to attack.

USA international Tyler Boyd was one of the surprise success stories from the derby last week.

Boyd made the highest number of tackles (6), most interceptions (3) and two tackles.

And was just as impressive going forwards making the highest number of dribbles for his side (3) helping his side pose an attacking threat.

He is almost certain to start on the right-wing with Nkoudou on the right.

Antalyaspor Team News

The visitors meanwhile will be without the Charles and Bahadir Ozturk who are injured.

There was panic in the Antalyaspor camp earlier this week after Charles was taken into quarantine in Brazil amid fears that he had been diagnosed with the coronavirus.

Antalyaspor manager Tamer Tuna did, however, deny the reports as being nothing more than rumors.

“Charles went abroad for two days for treatment. After completing his treatment we wanted him to return but he has been taken into quarantine in Brazil as a precautionary measure because he traveled to Brazil via France,” Tuna revealed.


Besiktas are undefeated in 22 of their last 24 home games. Antalyaspor meanwhile, are unbeaten in their last eight league games.

The Antalyaspor camp was, however, disrupted by fears that coronavirus had spread to the camp.

It turned out to be false but the word from Antalya is that panic set in among some of the players and that it disrupted training sessions at the start of the week.

The home side are missing important players and it is worth underlining that there will be no fans.

Besiktas will not have a home advantage. Additionally, some footballers have shown concerns that the league is going ahead with the ongoing pandemic.

Loris Karius and Tyler Boyd made their displeasure at the current situation felt over Instagram.

Besiktas are just five points off 4th placed Sivasspor and a victory would put real pressure on the central Anatolian side.

The Black-Whites have managed to avoid defeat in their last four games despite playing league leaders Trabzonspor and title challengers Galatasaray.

Yalcin is a cult figure at Besiktas which stems from his time at the Istanbul giants as a footballer. In these trying times his presence will charisma could provide a much needed moral boost.

Prediction: Besiktas Win 

Besiktas vs Antalyaspor

Kick-Off: 20:00 Local Time


Besiktas possible lineup: Karius; Gonul, Vida, Ruiz, Erkin; Boyd, Hutchinson, Elneny, N’Koudou; Yilmaz, Boateng

Antalyaspor possible lineup: Boffin; Sangare, Sari, Celustka, Kudryashov; Ozmert, Fredy; Gumus, Podolski, Amilton; Jahovic