By Richard Beale….
Esentepe were dead and buried in this match after only 30 minutes as they were overrun by a rampant Çetinkaya team that only had one thing on their mind 3 points and promotion back into the Super League.
Details: ÇETINKAYA TŞK 4 ESENTEPE KKSK 1
Saturday April 23, 2022: AKSA League 1: Lefkoşa Atatürk Stadium.
The TRNC oldest football club Çetinkaya returned to the Super League at the first attempt as they blew away a shell shocked Esentepe team to gain the necessary 3 points to give them promotion.
Before the match started I was quite confident that Esentepe young team containing 5 teenagers would come of age, and have the legs and energy on a warm afternoon to cause an upset. Of course, I was wrong and once again Esentepe came away from the Atatürk Stadium winless when we play there again İ will be writing the same old drivel about how this is Esentepe’s jinx and hoodoo stadium where we always come away with nothing. Cetinkaya are a big experienced physical team with tall, strong men in attack and defence maybe Esentepe youngsters were intimidated by this and could not come to terms.
The only good thing about this day is that 6th place Dörtyol lost 4-0 to L. Gençler Birliği (Coached by ex Esentepe KILIÇ ALI KAHRAMAN) so that last “playoff ” place is as you were before both teams competing for that final place with 2 games remaining.
Esentepe were without their veteran defender Okan Kibar after picking up 4 yellow cards, he has been one of their most consistent performers this season and his experience and physical presence was solely missed Likewise Çetinkaya were also without their 22 leading goalscorer Ibrahim Köse again through suspension as the score suggests he was not missed!.
A disappointing crowd of around 150- 175 were lost in the vast soulless Atatürk Stadium.
Çetinkaya were in no mood to let the “country bumkins” Esentepe rain on their parade, they meant business right from the kickoff, dominating the early stages and it was no surprise when they took the lead after only 8 minutes following poor defending by Esentepe. Emre Nazik on the left outpaced Mahmut, got to the byline before sending over a low cross that Esentepe goalkeeper Onur failed to grab and ARDA EREN METIN had the easy task to prod home. 1-0
The big Esentepe goalkeeper made up for his error making a couple of good saves as his team was completely at sea with their defence constantly breached.
Their defence was missing again after 13 minutes, a simple ball by Emre into the path of CEMAL KURT to squeeze a shot past Onur. 2-0.
Esentepe were given an unexpected lifeline in the 25th minute when Hüseyin Deynekli on the right managed to get across in that was going away from goal and with no threat, until Yusuf tangled with Semih bringing the Esentepe man down. The Stadium jinx saw Eser Kan’s penalty pushed away by the diving Çetinkaya goalkeeper Ozan to his left where Salih fired in the rebound across the face of the goal with no Esentepe player managing to get a touch to the ball.
Straight away the ball was transferred to the other end in the 27th minute where ARDA EREN METIN brushed aside Esentepe non existent defence to score his second goal 3-0.
This match was fast becoming a rout and Esentepe Coach Davut Kansu had to do something which he did hauling off defenders Nersin and Mahmut and replacing them with Şenol and Mustafa Soytürk in the 30th minute.
Çetinkaya midfield of Behiç, Cemal and Ertan were in complete control in midfield and if it wasn’t for some wasteful finishing and some good saves from goalkeeper Onur then the score could have easily been 5-0 at the break. HALF TIME SCORE: 3-0.
Esentepe were given some hope in the 49th minute when they scored from their second penalty after Hüseyin Deynekli was upended by Yusuf in the box, this time ESER KAN made no mistake from the spot. 3-1.
Hüseyin Deynekli (bıldırcın) nearly pulled another goal back in the 64th minute when he quickly nipped in and robbed a defender of the ball and sped on into the area but goalkeeper Ozan managed to block the Esentepe strikers shot.
Onur in the Esentepe goal continued to deny Çetinkaya, where Arda Eren was desperate to complete his hat trick missing a couple of golden opportunities.
Esentepe in the 64th minute played their final hand bringing on Emek, Ismet and Hüseyin Ermış in place of Salih, Eser and the injured Devran.
The jinx hit Esentepe again as soon as they made their substitutions when defender Gürkan Demir fell heavily on his knee after a hefty challenge with Abbas. Gürkan who has only recently regained fitness after being troubled by a knee injury clearly was in pain and had to be stretchered off, Esentepe had to play the remainder of the game with 10 men.
At long last in the 83rd minute ARDA EREN METIN completed his hat trick after a pass from Recip. 4-1.
Çetinkaya made a number of changes themselves giving squad players playing time as all Esentepe players and supporters wanted was to hear the final whistle and leave this bl**** stadium !. FULL TIME SCORE : 4-1
SUMMING UP: Congratulations to Coach Turan Altay his team have been outstanding this season, Çetinkaya are a big Lefkoşa club with a fine history they are now back in the Super League where they belong. We had hope for Esentepe that we could pull off a shock result but it was not to be we were beaten fair and square by the better team on the day. We will forget about this match, dust ourselves down, and with Dortyol losing as well, we live to fight another day where 3rd place Miracle Değirmenlik awaits us in a showdown next Saturday afternoon in Esentepe.