By Richard Beale ….
A 29th minute goal from Gönyeli striker Serkan proved to be the only goal of the last home match of the season, where Esentepe endured a very frustrating afternoon.
Result: ESENTEPE KKSK 0 GÖNYELİ SK 1
Saturday May 4, 2019: K-Pet Super League : Esentepe Erdal Barut Stadium.
Esentepe dropped vital points, as Binatlı who were one place below them managed to secure an away draw at Gençik Gücü to move just above Esentepe. Though they have the same number of points and goal difference with Esentepe maybe “B” coming before “E” is the reason why they have climbed above us. Though automatic relegation is secure, if the league placings remain the same Binatlı will start in the “play offs” with 1 point and Esentepe 0 points. So the last match of the season at already relegated Gençler Birliği is a must win for Esentepe to try and overtake Binatlı.
With all three of their African players watching the match from the sidelines, (Junior and Efosa suspended and Sane missing with a long term injury), it was left to Gönyeli’s three Africans to show what Esentepe were missing. 21 goal striker John Okoli was always a threat upfront and Christian and Kehinde were always behind Gonyeli moves from midfield.
The Esentepe squad was bare, emptier than ‘Old Mother Hubbard’s cupboard” not even a bone left. You cannot fault the effort and determination Esentepe showed, every player tried his hardest, it was just Esentepe’s lack of depth they have in their squad.
Gönyeli created the better and clearest chances and Esentepe have goalkeeper Onur to thank for making some crucial saves.
Esentepe “huffed and puffed” but they couldn’t blow Gönyeli’s house down. Even though Gönyeli played with 10 men for most of the second half after Kemal Varan was sent off after an “off the ball’ incident on Esentepe’s Şükrü.
Esentepe attack had no cutting edge to them, countless crosses were defended or deflected away. When the defence faltered Gönyeli’s excellent goalkeeper Kemal Bağbal was decisive in dealing with crosses. Talat Dağer their Captain, tall, strong and powerful in defence gave a “Captains performance”.
Esentepe’s only real chances of the match came in the 12th minute following a Mahmut corner which Vurkan headed wide from a good position.
In the 24th minute following a very good build up involving Mahmut and Kaan, Yakup was given a shooting opportunity, which keeper Kemal Bağbal dived to save, I think that was the only time Kemal actually had to dive!
Esentepe had an appeal for a penalty turned down when Şükrü was upended right on the line of the goal area, but the referee awarded Esentepe a free kick just outside the box.
The only goal of the game came in the 29th minute when a long ball from Christian found Serkan and Esentepe’s Şahın chasing a bouncing ball, Şahin missed his attempted clearance leaving SERKAN to flick the ball past Onur. 0-1.
After Kemal’s dismissal Gönyeli packed their defence leaving striker John Okoli upfront and he was always a danger in their breakaways.
Esentepe played their only recognised forward 16 year old Şükrü who is very inexperienced but he didn’t let the team down he tried his damndest, just like the whole team did.
Esentepe tried at various times pushing defenders Hasan, Şahın and Mustafa Kiliç up front to help Şükrü, but they too floundered against Gonyeli”s brick wall defence.
SUMMING UP : FRUSTRATION ! at least Efosa Francis will be available for Esentepe next week. However Şükrü already on 3 yellow cards got himself deliberately booked and will miss next week’s final game of the season – but he will be available for all of the 3 vital play off matches.
Every player gave 100 per cent, though VURKAN gave a tireless performance as a defensive midfielder in front of his defence.
One last League Match left we must win next week, so vitally important.
Video match Highlights courtesy of Graham Procter-Brown