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Galatasaray assuming control in the Turkish Super League

Monday 16th October 2017
Eight games into the Turkish Super League season, it should be no surprise seeing a side like Galatasaray leading the line.

The Istanbul side have assumed control as the Super Lig takes shape. Being 20-time Turkish champion has earned the club a global reputation. Gala's most recent title came in 2014-15 during Hamza Hamzaoglu's managerial reign.

Galatasaray is now managed by former Croatian international, Igor Tudor, who played for Juventus between 1998-2007. His playing career alternated between Croatia'sPrva HNL and Serie A.

Before arriving at Galatasaray, Tudor managed Hadjuk Split in his native country, PAOK in Greece, and Karabukspor in Turkey. He has worked his way up to a big club while learning the local lay of the land.
Last season Galatasaray finished fourth. Tudor knows both fans and the board expect him to improve on that. So far, so good. This campaign has started off well. Eight games have been played and Cimbom have won seven and drawn one.   The boss has managed that while having to replace influential albeit ageing Europeans Wesley Sneijder and Lukas Podolski.

Galatasaray's summer signings include Bafetimbi Gomis from Swansea and Sofiane Fehouli from West Ham. Gomis is currently the league's joint-top goalscorer, with Goztepe's Adis Jahovic on nine. That's good value for £2 million. Feghouli also has two goals. Tudor's signings are paying early dividends.

Another successful addition has been Maicon, although not the one who made his name with Inter. This 29-year-old Brazilian central defender from Sao Paolo has three goals this season and could maybe grab a few more in the current campaign.
Galatasaray's recent 2-0 win against Konyaspor cemented its Super Lig pole position. Second place Goztepe are on 16 points. Just eight games in, Gala is already six points in front. The question now is whether they can pull further away.

With 20 goals scored and only six conceded, Igor Tudor's side is on course for a successful season, although it's always easier said than done. Fierce rivals Fenerbahce visit the Turk Telekom Stadium next. As the weekend's trip to Anfield was for Manchester United, this match is Galatasaray's biggest test to date. The Intercontinental derby is always highly anticipated. Supporters will certainly do their part to make it more interesting than the drab goalless draw that played out in England.

More than a century spent battling in the top-flight provides historical fuel to light the fires that rain down from the 50,000 strong in the stands in every encounter between these national titans. Neither side has ever been relegated.
Even though Galatasaray appear to be easing through the season, its arch rivals represent a formidable obstacle. There can be no doubt this is a defining moment for Igor Tudor and his squad.
Jamie Kynaston

For my sins, I'm a season ticket holder at Stoke City, I have been proud to watch them for over 20 years. I follow most of the UK leagues and the major European ones too, and I've been told that I talk way too much about football.


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