Fatih Terim and Turkish Football Federation, the crisis deepens

ARDA ALAN IŞIK
Published 01.08.2017 00:14

Last week Turkish football director Fatih Terim announced that he had resigned from his job after a meeting with Turkish Football Federation Chairman Yıldırım Demirören and other executives. Terim was already on the verge of catastrophe. His position had become almost untenable after the crisis with Arda Turan, the team's poor form and the brawl that happened because Terim and his bodyguards stormed a restaurant, but his disgraceful criticism of his critic Rüştü Rençber was the last nail in his coffin. Nevertheless, rather than silently leaving the federation with all his severance money, Terim launched another assault in a statement in which he claimed he was forced to resign by the Turkish Football Federation.

Almost everyone who follows the Turkish national team knows that there is a huge crisis on the field and the team has performed far below expectations. Of course, as a classic Terim strategy, the Turkish football director firstly tried to create some distractions, in order to escape from the harsh criticism. He made the captain of the team, an almost equally important figure, Barcelona star Arda Turan the target, and it worked. Nevertheless, despite his efforts to banish so-called poisonous players from the squad, the team failed to improve and at that point Terim's credit hit the floor.

The brawl Terim and his men started in a restaurant can be seen as a final media push by Terim. Seeing as Fatih Terim has always been more than just a coach in Turkey and has strong relations with powerful people, he could have got the result he wanted without even going to the restaurant, but he deliberately chose to start a fire. His rude response to Rençber can also be seen as an attempt to further escalate his fight with his rational critics. Terim's methods have always resembled Reichstag Fires, and in the end he always managed to benefit from it.

However, this time Terim crossed the line and almost no one in the media dared to come to his support. Although Terim had one of the most powerful lobbies in the Turkish football media, after his resignation only one or two columnists commented on the issue. But this does not mean that Terim is willing to accept his defeat. As another columnist Osman Tanburacı pointed out in his blog, his lobbyists are working in the shadows, publishing pieces that claim Terim will become the next Galatasaray coach.

Now, we all know how Terim's cycle works, an endless ride between Galatasaray and the national team, which the federation has no intention of breaking, nor the power. Nonetheless, it is now obvious that Terim's methods have no place in Turkish football anymore and what Turkey needs is a healthy, progressive and collective atmosphere in which the new generations can be built. Thus, before Terim strikes again, we need a greater mind than the Turkish Football Federation to implement this plan, a powerful figure to facilitate the will of the people.

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