September 27, 2022

By Richard Beale…..

Esentepe 2-0 down at the half time break, looking dead and buried, staged a tremendous second half comeback with striker EGE CAN AÇIKPORTALI scoring a hat trick to secure a win to enable Esentepe to finish runners up in League 1.


Saturday April 30: AKSA U21 League 1: Esentepe Erdal Barut Stadium.

With Esentepe requiring only 1 point to secure the runners up spot, there was a carnival atmosphere at the Erdal Barut Stadium with also the under 8 and under 15 teams present to watch the match.

However things didn’t go to plan with the visitors Değirmenlik taking on the role as “party poopers” as they had the better of the first half, going into the break 2 goals to the good.

Match Action ——–Esentepe in the black strip

Esentepe in the warm sunshine really struggled, coming off second best in midfield, and their attack slow and predictable, lacking width. Esentepe defence missing their Captain Halit Culcu also struggled to cope with Değirmenlik attack.

Değirmenlik created the better chances and took the lead in the 35th minute when a poor header out of defence by an Esentepe defender went straight to ADNAN AKSOY who hit a fierce shot past Ulaş. 0-1

Esentepe paid the penalty for poor marking when in the 43rd minute YUNUS EMRE KAYISIZ turned in a low cross. HALF TIME SCORE : 0-2.

Whatever Coaches Emek and Gökhan said to the team during the break, Esentepe were suddenly energised, finding new legs on a warm afternoon. They started pushing up and now Mahmut Şen and Dincer Ali Karal, who both had poor first halves started to get the better of their Değirmenlik counterparts were now giving Gökdeniz Söyturk who was Esentepe best player in the first half some support. With substitute Halil İbrahim on and Mehmet Beyazbayram starting to overlap Esentepe had the width and made use of the wings something that they faıled to do ın the first half.

They pulled a goal back in the 51st minute when following a Dursun free kick from the right EGE CAN AÇIKPORTALI sent a glancing header past goalkeeper Adnan. 1-2.

Esentepe continued to improve with Ege Can coming close and Şahin hitting the Değirmenlik crossbar.

Esentepe equalised in the 71st minute and it was a simple goal scored in “route 1!” fashion. A long kick from goalkeeper Ulaş was chased down by EGE CAN AÇIKPORTALI who bravely got his head to a bouncing ball first before the on rushing goalkeeper and defender Berkay. 2-2.

EGE CAN AÇIKPORTALI celebrates after scoring the winning goal and completing his hat trick.

Esentepe sensing blood had the bit between their teeth now as Değirmenlik were a shadow of the team that caused trouble in the first half.

In the 86th minute to complete a remarkable comeback EGE CAN AÇIKPORTALI completed his hat trick cutting across the box before beating Adnan with a shot. 3-2.

This set off wild scenes of celebrations amongst the team, squad and supporters.

To complete a miserable second half Değirmenlik had Can Babahan sent off for an off the ball incident in the 90th minute.

Esentepe had made hard work of this match but they prevailed in the end to finish as runners up to Champions Gençlik Güçü.

On limited resources Coaches Emek and Gökhan have worked wonders, congratulations to them and all of the team on this fantastic achievement. FULL TIME SCORE : 3-2.


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