I would not be exaggerating if I said Trabzon is one of the hardest cities for a coach to work in. Trabzonspor fans' reputation for needing anger management and their constant pressure on coaches has created a strong traditional immunity against any kind of reformist ideas about football. Despite their magnificent run in the 1970s, which they achieved with mostly young players and new ideas, the burden of the past is holding the city from a new adventure. As political theorist Hannah Arendt said, "The most radical revolutionary will become a conservative the day after the revolution." The city, which has a good memory, often mourns the old times and usually compares the performances of all players, coaches and executives with the ones from the golden ages. Ersun Yanal, the latest victim of the collective memory of Trabzon, is seemingly having trouble implementing his plans in the city. The reaction from the stadium when he took Özer Hurmacı off was a good example of the pressure he has endured.
This burden, when accompanied with the burden of fundamental issues, can be lethal for any coach working in the industry. Given the first step of reform is failure, and seeing as Trabzon fans are as merciless as a Tea Party member when it comes to reform, the stakes are too high for Yanal. The sanity of the crowd is so fragile and, as we saw in the Beşiktaş game, it could turn into a mental breakdown in the blink of an eye. As an organized coach, Yanal needs sanity more than anything and his players are not helping him very much at the moment. Özer Hurmacı's behavior when he was substituted put his coach in such a dangerous situation that even Yanal lost control and started to debate with fans. At this stage, there is a dilemma waiting for Yanal; He might step back and be a more agreeable coach, which would risk the club's future performance, or he might heighten the tension and implement his plans firmly, which would risk his career at the club. Trabzonspor's performance depends on the balance that Yanal can derive from this dilemma.
The Beşiktaş game was not a good example of a balanced Trabzonspor. Although Slaven Bilic and Beşiktaş did not actually do enough to win, they were more settled and controlled than Trabzonspor and Yanal. Mehmet Ekici and Özer Hurmacı, players that construct the center of Trabzonspor's strategy, were not dedicated enough and fluent. Yanal wants his team to get into the opponent's half as quick as possible but both Hurmacı and Ekici love to play with the ball and the whole momentum collapses as a consequence. On the other hand, despite the fact that Beşiktaş did not press the Trabzon midfield and let them circulate the ball freely, in only a few cases Trabzon created an organized attack. Yanal might have tried to shorten the distance between the center of the game and both the defensive and offensive players. As part of a quick counter plan, it is normal to have distant and "lonely" players around the pitch, nevertheless if Slaven Bilic and Beşiktaş do one thing right it is narrowing the open spaces. And it helped the away side outnumber Trabzonspor in midfield. Of course, Yanal could try to play this quick game in narrow spaces too, but he needs fundamentally complete and mentally dedicated players to do that.
Ersun Yanal is a fresh page for Trabzonspor and the city should not let this chance go, as happened when Şenol Güneş and Tolunay Kafkas were in charge. Trabzon still has a great deal of potential in its young players and Yanal is the right person to raise a new, promising generation. For the sake of the club, Trabzon should embrace this foreigner.
Beşiktaş goalie Günay Güvenç, again, had a decent performance against Trabzonspor, but he failed to be precise enough in a few cases. One of the worst habits for a goalkeeper is to make hopeless and pointless decisions, in order to appear to be "trying." If you throw yourself at the ball, make sure you do that in order to make contact, not because standing still looks bad. Günay is a young and promising goalkeeper but he should stay away from these habits and concentrate on what he does best. On the other hand, Trabzon goalie Hakan Arıkan was not responsible for the two goals that his team conceded. He successfully saved two or three opportunities and prevented a disastrous loss for Trabzon.
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