Who Will Contest the 2021-22 Turkish Süper Lig?
Besiktas came out on top of a nail-biting 2020-21 Turkish Super Lig, that went down to the final day of the season where any of three teams could have been crowned champions.
Sergen Yalcın’s side held off rivals Galatasaray on goal difference, whilst Fenerbahce were only two points back.
The same three teams are expected to battle it out in the new campaign too. Here’s a look at their preparation ahead of the new campaign:
The winners of last season’s domestic double will be looking to qualify for European football next campaign, after being dumped out before the group stages in both the Champions League and Europa League.
That would be a big distraction on Yalcin’s squad, who will be the favourites for the title. Only narrowly though, which means you may prefer using a Matchbook sign up offer to back your selection.
Besiktas’ season could depend on whether or not they are able to bring back Rachid Ghezzal. The Algerian international scored eight goals and provided 17 assists in the league last season whilst on loan from Leicester City. The English Premier League club are now receiving offers for the star.
Bernard Mensah also played in 31 league matches (13 starts) on loan from Kayserispor. Right-back Valentin Rosier was an excellent player whilst on loan from Sporting Club of Lisbon – where the 24-year-old’s future lies is yet unknown.
Centre-back Javi Montero was also on loan from Atletico Madrid. So, the club’s hierarchy will need to assist the manager in bringing back some of these players or replacements if Besiktas are to be as strong as they were this past season.
Galatasaray will have a shot at reaching the Champions League group stage from the qualifying rounds this term. Last season they dropped out of the Europa League at the first hurdle.
Fatih Terim’s side ended last season with six successive victories and only missed out on lifting the league title by two goals.
The club were hurt by Younes Belhanda’s criticism of the club’s management, which lead to the midfielder’s release back in March. He had been one of the best player’s last season.
The manager did a good job in the transfer market last summer despite not having a penny to spend, but his side did rely on a larger number of loanees. Gedson Fernandes (Benfica), Mostafa Mohamed (Zamalek) and Henry Onyekuru (Monaco) have all since returned to their parent clubs.
A squad that contains Mbaye Diagne, Radamel Falcao, Ryan Babel, Sofiane Feghouli and Fernando Muslera have every reason to believe they can win back the title.
The signing of Mesut Ozil in January galvanised Fenerbahce, who went on a roll following the turn of the year. However, a surprise defeat at home to Sivasspor in their penultimate game of the season ultimately cost Fenerbahce the 2020-21 Turkish Super Lig.
Still looking to fill the vacant managerial roll, whoever takes charge at the Şukru Saracoglu Stadium will have a lot of talent to work with.
Diego Perotti, Caner Erkin and Enner Valencia all remain on their books for the time being, whilst the squad also includes Papiss Cisse, Luiz Gustavo, Mathias Jorgensen.