Yes, you heard me right, Fatih Terim is the emperor of Turkish football, as his supporters often call him. He is, by far, the most successful manager in Turkish football history and no one else stayed as long as him in the top flight of Turkish football. He understands the dynamics of Turkish football more than anyone else since he created most of those dynamics.
He is the soul and intellect of Turkish football which is embodied in himself; no one else represents Turkish football better than him. All of the major qualities we attribute to Turkish football, chaos, aggression and masculinity, are best represented by Mr. Terim. That is why, he is and, unless we define Turkish football with words like peace, order and respect, he will always be the emperor of Turkish football. After Galatasaray's championship, I received several responses from friends and readers, suggesting that we should acknowledge Terim as the emperor of Turkish football. I agree with them since the system encourages chaos, aggression and masculinity, it explicitly operates in favor of Terim.
Please note that I am not mentioning Galatasaray, as they only enjoy being a big gun without Terim. Nevertheless, Terim controls the league. No one else in Turkish football knows how to shape administrative and refereeing decisions in Turkish football better than him. He charges at the opponent's bench, ignites a brawl, accuses referees of fraud without evidence and finally manages to gather entire Galatasaray community around him, making them believe that someone or something is conspiring against them.
What Fatih Terim does perfectly is to throw the game into disarray when the things go south. His team and his tactics are not so much different than his opponents, and I argued many times in this column that Başakşehir played much better football than Galatasaray. Nevertheless, give the devil his due, with his bravery and his ability to start a fire, Terim has always found a way to change the course of the game.
Consider the Başakşehir game for example, right after Başakşehir scored a goal, Terim and his crew started to harass the Başakşehir bench and attempted to assault them. Yes, Başakşehir player Emre Belözoğlu's goal celebration ignited the tensions, but that does not legitimize Terim's crew and players' aggression towards the referee and their opponent throughout the 90 minutes.
Even though referee righteously ruled out two of Galatasaray's goals, Terim and his team went crazy after both decisions, as if the rules should not apply to them. Thus, considering they show the same mentality each and every game, they put enormous pressure on referees to make decisions in their favor.
In addition, after not being able to defeat the worst Fenerbahçe of all times in two games, rather than self-criticism, Terim wreaked havoc. After the first game against Fenerbahçe, he started one of the most embarrassing brawls in Turkish football, as two sides fought with each other for minutes. Nonetheless, it is not the first time Terim used these methods and it will not be the last. His whole career is full of moments like this, and as long as Turkish football allows his methods to work, he will remain the emperor.
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