Trabzonspor vs Beşiktaş
Saturday 21st April 2012 @17:00 GMT
Avni Aker stadium
Prediction: Over 2.5 @ 2.00
Trabzonspor didn't get off to the best of starts, few really expected them to beat Fenerbahçe in the Şükrü Saracoğlu however, the ease with which the Yellow Canaries beat the Black Sea giants will have caused concern to manager Şenol Güneş. Trabzonspor were dominated throughout the game, failed to gain any meaningful possession in midfield and were passed off the pitch.
The Black sea storm know that any chance of winning the league have faded away considering they are 14 points behind playoff leaders Galatasaray. To make matters worse even making it into a Champions League position is looking very unlikely as they are 9 points behind Fenerbahçe. The clubs main priority now is to finish in third position and make the Europa League.
Trabzonspor return home with a serious problem, star striker Burak Yilmaz is out with a broken nose. The team have really struggled on the attacking front without Yilmaz. Paulo Henrique is likely to start instead of Yilmaz, however, the Brazilian striker has only scored 3 goals all season. Another alternative manager Şenol Güneş could use is to play Halil Altintop upfront, the Turkish international has been in better form with 6 goals and has 8 assists this season.
The turbulent situation at Beşiktaş went from bad to worse after their first home defeat to Galatasaray since 2006. Bebe, Sidnei and Alves were dropped from the squad following professional behaviour following the game. Quaresma's didn't do himself any favors with his post match gestures to the fans and Hilbert is facing a red card suspension. The Black Eagles are in the same position as Trabzonspor, they are on the same points and same goal difference.
Tayfur Havutçu sprung a late surprise when he decided to opt for a 4-3-3 setup, the newly appointed Besiktas manager was expected to be using a 4-4-2 setup. Mustafa Pektemek was the lone striker upfront, with Holosko and Quaresma playing wide. Manuel Fernandes, Fabian Ernst and the ineffective Veli Kavlak made up the midfield trio. Ibrahim Toroman filled in for the suspended Egemen Korkmaz in defense, Roberto Hilbert made his return on the right wing and İsmail Köybaşı started on the left.
The most valuable player for Beşiktaş this season has been Manual Fernandes; he is definitely the one to watch. The versatile box to box midfielder has been given a more attacking role in contrast to his position at Valencia. However, he hasn't neglected his defensive duties. Fernandes has been pulling the strings in the Beşiktaş midfield this season; he has great individual skills, wonderful vision and creativity. Manny has an impressive passing range, having the ability to thread delicate through balls as well as accurate long range passes and did I fail to mention he also possesses a ferocious shot. Fernandes has 16 assists and 7 goals to his name this season.
This is a must win game for both sides, however, Trabzonspor will struggle attacking wise without Burak Yilmaz. The Black Sea club will have Olcan and Alanzinho who will cause the shaky Beşiktaş problems. However, the midfield battle between Fernandes + Ernst and Colman + Zokora will be key in the determining the outcome of this game. Colman and Zokora will have to prevent the Black Eagles midfield maestro from working his magic in midfield as their defense just isn't cut out to deal with his intelligent through balls and creativity. Both Beşiktaş and Trabzonspor have quality players in attacking positions however, their defensively it's another story and either of these sides could concede at any time.
Predicting Over 2.5 goals
Recent Form: DDDDL
Recent Form: WDLDL
Head to Head: 36 - 21 - 38
Weather Conditions: Sunny, 20°C