Can Robinho return to his golden days with Başakşehir?

ARDA ALAN IŞIK
ISTANBUL
Published 28.12.2018 23:38
Updated 29.12.2018 08:00

Robinho's career has seen a lot of ups and down. Once a poster boy for Brazilian football and the heir to Pele, he left Italy a convicted man. Now, he has created another chance for himself to play top-tier football with Turkish Super League leaders Başakşehir.

After traveling all around the world, playing for a variety of teams like Real Madrid, Manchester City and Milan, he ironically stopped the decline of his career in the small, mountainous and extremely cold city of Sivas in eastern Turkey. He scored 12 goals and made five assists in 30 games with Sivasspor, being the team's most important offensive weapon. Now, a bigger challenge awaits him, he needs to deliver a form of dynamism to the Başakşehir attack in its championship journey.

At first glance, it seems like a perfect match since Başakşehir needs an effective striker and Robinho needs a reason to take football seriously again. Unfortunately for Başakşehir, Emmanuel Adebayor seems to have lost his desire to play football and despite his great performance last season; he is not even in the starting line-up this time around.

Riad Bajic, on the other hand, is a promising striker but he is yet to become the first choice of coach Abdullah Avcı. Thus, despite being the league leaders, Başakşehir is the least scoring team in the top five.

What Robinho needs to deliver first and foremost is high-quality finishing. Başakşehir relies on its defensive strength and slow but organized offense. It does not let its opponents find opportunities, but it's not able to create much for themselves either. They need a striker who can make most of those opportunities count. For this, they needed an experienced player with proven talent, and as the Turkish Super League experiences one of its worst striker scarcity, Robinho was the best bet Başakşehir could play.

Furthermore, Edin Visca, the top scorer and the best playmaker for Başakşehir with six goals and seven assists, will have more space and time due to the threat Robinho will pose to the opponents.

Unlike Adebayor and Bajic, Robinho is not a static striker; he continuously changes his position to create chaos inside the opponent defense. Visca will definitely benefit from the havoc that Robinho will wreak in the opponent's defense. I expect him to score more goals and make more assists with Robinho.

With Robinho's finishing and Visca's increased efficiency, Başakşehir can finally reach the Super League title that they have been working so hard to achieve for a very long time. That is of course if they can stay confident until the end of the season, because the big guns of the league have not waged their best psychological warfare as of yet.

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