The Istanbul Derby is Not For the Faint of Heart

Istanbul Derby
ISTANBUL, TURKEY - DECEMBER 2 : Ricardo Quaresma of Besiktas (L) vies with Jason Denayer of Galatasaray (R) during the Turkish Super Lig match between Besiktas and Galatasaray at Vodafone Park in Istanbul, Turkey on December 2, 2017. (Photo by Onur Coban/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)

Timo Werner was probably not in attendance at this one. When he was playing for RB Leipzig at Besiktas he had to leave the pitch because he felt so unsettled. The atmosphere at the Istanbul derby, down by the Bosphorus, is definitely not for the faint of heart. Such is the noise that it dominates everything. The whistling when the opposition has the ball is on a level few stadiums can match. Your eardrums take a serious battering. Somehow the opposition has to maintain concentration and tune out this onslaught to the senses. The visitors should have known what to expect.They too have fanatical support. And at the time they were leading the Turkish Super League.

Besiktas 3 Galatasaray 0.

But right from the start, once the pre-game rhythms and fan bouncing had relented, Besiktas were on top. Striker Cenk Tosun would miss a very early chance. His team dominated possession in the first half. Ex-Ajax and Liverpool wide man Ryan Babel was often the main threat. After the break, three goals decided the derby. The men in black and white were certainly aided by a bad mistake by Uruguayan keeper Muslera. His slip gifted Tosun the opening goal. Besiktas would then contrive to miss a set of chances before defender Tosic made no mistake. And the result was put in no doubt when substitute Alvaro Negredo was left free to round the hapless goalie and slot the clincher.

Wear earplugs

On this performance, in a tight looking competition, Galatasaray will struggle to capture the Turkish league title. While Besiktas and their fans could bask in their Istanbul derby victory as they advance towards the top. They also have the knockout phase of the Champions League to enjoy. And though many would fancy their chances against the Black Eagles earplugs are definitely recommended.


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