Can the Turkish national football team shine again?

Turkey - Euro 2024 Turkish Football

The Turkish national football team has been full of disappointments lately. Will those guys regain their power? Who will lead the team to the EURO 2020? It’s time to figure it out.

Who will lead Turkey to the UEFA European Championship 2020?

Whereas Russia is all about fuss and thrill, related to the World Cup 2018, Turkish footballers are left out in the cold. Somewhere in the Maldives, Canary islands, or whatever. We strongly doubt that it’s freezy out there, but deep inside, they feel kind of oppressed, or at least we assume so. It’s been a while since Turkey was eliminated from the ongoing championship, and it’s a perfect time to brace yourself, and start thinking about the upcoming UEFA European Championship. But who will lead Turkey to the final of the Euros? The young blood, such as Hakan Calhanoglu and Emre Mor, or the experienced Arda Turan? Will Mircea Lucescu retain his coach position? The judge whistles and our team starts speculating about the future of the Turkish national team.

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Painful Experience as a Motivation

The qualifications for the World Cup 2018 started dreadfully for Turkey: 2 draws with the direct rivals Croatia, and Ukraine questioned the team’s possibility to get into the next round of the competition. The third match with Iceland would seem to be a decisive punch in the face, of the then-coach Fatih Terim – 2:0 in favor of Iceland on the Laugardalsvollur stadium. Nevertheless, the Janissaries gave a glimmer of hope to its fans, with the subsequent 3 wins of 4 matches. But all the Turkish troubles began with this home match against Iceland: 0:3 again in favor of Our boys. At this moment, all Turkish hopes were crushed: it was pretty clear that there is no need to book tickets for a flight to Russia. The Turkish streak without making it to the World Cup, would last at least 4 more years. To say that it was a blow for Turkish fans would be an understatement, especially when they so desperately believed in Mircea Lucescu, who by the time of the loss, had already had 3 matches at the helm of the Turkey national team.

Whatever the cause of their failure was, it would be ridiculous to lay the blame on Mircea, who had just joined the team. Or the leader of Turkey Arda Turan, who was caught with a smile on his face, while his team was behind Iceland by 3 goals. Anyway, it’s time to prepare for the next championship, which is right around the corner.

UEFA Nations League

The UEFA Nations League is a new football contest, which aims to substitute for most of the friendly matches. This competition should attract the attention of fans, unlike the friendly matches, which do not have official record, and apparently are of no interest to fans. It’s a great chance for the Turkey national team to redeem itself in front of its fans and show the world that third place at the World Cup 2002 is not their limit.

Moreover, what makes the UEFA Nations League a mince pie, is the opportunity to qualify to the Euros directly: 4 places of the 24 available, will be awarded to the best team of each group.

Turkey’s defender Caglar Soyuncu (R) celebrates after scoring his team’s second goal during the friendly football match between Tunisia and Turkey at the Stade de Geneve stadium in Geneva on June 1, 2018. (Photo by Fabrice COFFRINI / AFP) (Photo credit should read FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP/Getty Images)

Who will bring the Cup of the Euros to Ankara?

Despite the two recent draws against Tunisia and Russia (2:2 and 1:1 respectively), it’s unlikely that Mircea Lucescu will be replaced in his position. The whole country, and the team itself, show a lot of trust in the Romanian specialist.

As far as the Turkish leader Arda Turan is concerned, his heyday is apparently over. His transfer to Barcelona was a step back, especially considering the fact that his career in Catalonia began on the bench, due to the transfer ban. Now he continues performing at home, for Istanbul Basaksehir. The Turkish Super Lig is a bad sign for a player who is only 29.

Emre Mor was noticed at 19. He signed a contract with Borussia Dortmund, which caused a real stir among Turkish football fans. But he didn’t manage to gain a foothold with the team, appearing on the pitch only 12 times during the season 2016-2017 (1 Goal). His career in Celta is more uplifting, in terms of played games – Emre Mor participated in 23 games during the previous season. Nevertheless, he can’t be called a bigwig among the best footballers in his age group, considering such names as Neymar and Lukaku, who were already shining in their 20s.

Not much can be said about Hakan Calhanoglu. He hasn’t yet tried out his skills in a tough European championship, so his ability to lead Turkey during the next Euros is quite doubtful.

Who would be of enormous use to the Turkish national team, are such guys as Mesut Ozil and Gundogan. But, unfortunately, despite their Turkish roots, those guys chose Germany as their football national team.

Turkey’s midfielder Oguzhan Ozyakup celebrates after scoring a goal against Netherlands during the Euro 2016 qualifying football match between Turkey and Netherlands at the Arena Stadium in Konya, on September 6, 2015 in Konya. AFP PHOTO / STRINGER (Photo credit should read STR/AFP/Getty Images)