Column by Fatih Demireli: Mesut Özil is also becoming more and more of a problem at Fenerbahce
The Turkish club Fenerbahce is under German influence – the Istanbulers are even advised by a German company. However, Mesut Özil is also developing more and more from a bearer of hope to a problem case at Fenerbahce.
It was June 1st of this year when Ali Koc, President of Fenerbahce, invited some journalists to a conference and talked for almost three hours about the sporting situation at his club. What has not gone well so far, what should work better in the future. How Fenerbahce wants to position itself. How should the club happen.
It wasn’t actually a press conference, but an updated government statement. Necessary because Fenerbahce disappointed in the club boss’ first three years in office. It should be the first championship since 2014, but Fenerbahce was almost relegated in the first Koc season.
The richest son of the richest family in Turkey was at a loss to explain, but he also had a plan. “We will install either the German or the Portuguese school at Fenerbahce,” said Koc with conviction. Led by a coach who lives one of these philosophies, Fenerbahce should find its way back to success.
Fenerbahce gets ex-1860 Munich coach
In the days around the press conference, the first rumors arose that Fenerbahce had a serious interest in Roger Schmidt. The coach of PSV Eindhoven should be equipped with a lucrative contract, but Schmidt waved it off.
Another attempt was made with Dortmund’s ex-trainer Lucien Favre, and Domenico Tedesco is said to have been contacted, as it is said from the club environment. With all candidates without luck.
In the end, the choice fell on Vitor Pereira. A representative of the Portuguese school, but with a past in Germany. In 2017 the 53-year-old worked for 1860 Munich.
Pereira represents many characteristics that both Koc and many Turkish football fans imagine as a “German school”: organization, tactics, discipline and consistency.
Fenerbahce is advised by a German company
Components that Koc recently missed at Fenerbahce, with the president himself having a major share in this development.
Koc likes to be close to the action and is happy to be involved in all football-related decisions. On Thursday, Fenerbahce meets Eintracht Frankfurt in the Europa League (from 9 p.m. in the live ticker from FOCUS Online).
You can often hear Koc doing tactical analyzes by now. He talks about individual players, their strengths and weaknesses, although it has been proven that it is not his area of expertise.
For some time now, Koc has had a German voice in his ears when it comes to the conception of his football department at Fenerbahce: Roger Wittmann and his consulting agency ROGON.
Özil, Meyer, Berisha: Fenerbahce plays the German card
Serdar Ali Celikler, a well-known journalist and Fenerbahce connoisseur, wrote in a Habertürk column that ROGON acted as the “football brain” for Koc. The club no longer has a sports director, but an external advice center, which of course also helps with player transfers.
Most recently, ROGON signed two German players, Mergim Berisha and Max Meyer. You are not the agency’s first player at Fenerbahce. Some players are under contract, led by Luiz Gustavo.
Newcomer Berisha has just become U21 European champion with the DFB and had many offers across Europe. That Fenerbahce made the race is considered a real coup. One that would probably hardly have been possible without the close cooperation with ROGON.
At Meyer, who was neither happy at Crystal Palace nor at 1. FC Köln recently, one has the hope that the 25-year-old midfielder will finally find his football luck.
Özil is also becoming more and more of a problem at Fenerbahce
Meyer shouldn’t have too much trouble getting used to it, because Fenerbahce not only thinks German, but also speaks it. Nine players speak the German language. With Mesut Özil you even have a real world champion in your own ranks.
But things are not going well with Özil. The midfielder doesn’t really fit into the 3-6-1 system of coach Pereira, who still made him captain before the season – strange. The Fener bosses should want to see Özil in the starting XI, but Pereira prefer other tactical variants.
The 2014 world champion is increasingly sidelined in Turkey, and the hype after his engagement in January has long since subsided. Özil has never met the (immense) expectations so far. Some already believe that Fenerbahce regrets the five million euro transfer from Arsenal FC, and the domestic press is constantly complaining.
Özil is apparently no longer needed as a playmaker – and for Fenerbahce from a beacon of hope to a problem.
Turkish football often benefited from German influences
First and foremost by Jupp Derwall, whose arrival at Galatasaray in the 80s changed not only the club, but also all of football in the country. Derwall pushed the development of the infrastructure, training courses and professionalization and enjoys legendary status in Turkey.
When the former national coach died in 2007, even the Turkish state sent emissaries to Germany for a funeral. And the Turkish Football Association is about to sign Stefan Kuntz, a German national coach, in order to get out of the crisis that has existed since the disastrous Euro 2020.
Ex-Bayern star Altintop now head of football in Turkey
Hamit Altintop, a child of the Ruhr area, was commissioned to look for a trainer. The former Bundesliga professional (Schalke, Bayern) was responsible for promoting young talent on the association’s board until the end.
After the 1: 6 in the Netherlands in the World Cup qualification, national coach Senol Günes was dismissed and Altintop installed as head of the national team. Whose trip immediately went to Germany to look for a coach. If Kuntz agrees, the U21 European champion should get a three-year contract. Mustafa Dogan is being discussed as an assistant trainer. A former DFB national player.
The “German school”, as Ali Koc called it, is back in in Turkish football. In the Süper Lig four clubs are trained by coaches with German influence. A Turkish proverb says: “Start it like a Turk, end it like a German”. But at Fenerbahce and Co. the whole time has now been left to the Germans.
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