Unfortunately, principles alone do not bring success. One always needs practical solutions to keep fundamentals functioning. Beşiktaş's new manager, Abdullah Avcı, is supposed know this fact better than everyone else in Turkish football. Even though he came close to winning the Turkish league with his main philosophy, it was always the little details that kept him from the trophy. Right now, he is suffering from the same issue in Beşiktaş. He thinks that his squad is mentally and technically ready to embrace his ideals and to implement them on the pitch. Nevertheless, he forgets that it took him four years until he created a competitive team in Başakşehir. Thus, with defeats coming in a row, it is time for Avcı to acknowledge the complexity of the way to success and respect the reality of his team.
First, Avcı's team is not as talented as he thinks for the time being. Although the overall quality and the potential of the team is promising, the squad is simply not sufficient for playing the game Avcı had created in four years with another club. The atmosphere in Başakşehir and Beşiktaş are vastly different, and it is obvious that neither the fans nor the executives of Beşiktaş have enough patience for building a long-term team. Managing an Istanbul giant means that one has to strategize, prepare and execute quickly. This naturally leads managers to make pragmatic decisions to secure their jobs, and that is what Avcı has to do, unfortunately.
Some of my readers might find this advice hypocritical as I expect long-term strategies from other Turkish managers, but Avcı has already made his intentions clear with his insistence on a specific game, which will definitely benefit Beşiktaş in the long term. But for the sake of the process, he needs to secure his job. That is the ugly truth. What I am suggesting is that he can put more emphasis on opponent analysis and reactionary strategies for the short term, while slowly building the long-term game. The balance between these two approaches would earn him more points and credit, so that he can focus on his grand strategy without the stress of losing his job.
Of course, I am aware of the difficulty of the task I am expecting from him, but that is the only way forward. Knowing that Avcı is a manager with certain principles and a footballing philosophy, it would not be realistic to expect him to abandon his grand strategy and rely completely on passive game play. Thus, he has the credit that most of the Turkish managers do not have: to be more flexible with his approach. If I were him, I would concentrate more on defensive actions and transition games, as Beşiktaş has an athletic but not-so-talented squad. It is actually ironic that the team performs the best when they play more direct and faster, unlike Avcı's controlled and organized game. Seeing as his squad quality does not allow him to play a dominant game at the moment, Avcı can revise his game according to the capabilities of his players. Otherwise, there is not much time left before the entire Beşiktaş community runs out of patience - if it hasn't already.
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