Liverpool: 1 Beşiktaş: 0

Updated: February 20, 2015

Beşiktaş faced Liverpool FC at Anfield road tonight during the first leg of the round of 32 in the UEFA Europa League. Unfortunately the Black Eagles could not secure a good result heading in to next week’s second leg at the Atatürk Olimpiyat in Istanbul due to a late penalty goal from Mario Balotelli.

1. half

The first half was well balanced, some good football from both sides but appart from one very good chance for Demba Ba there weren’t any clear-cut chances.

Liverpool looked dangerous on set-pieces, especially corners. And came close to scoring with a free-kick just before half time and a long range attempt. While the Black Eagles’ had  a good chance on a corner kick aswell but Veli’s attempt when just ove the bar.

The best chance of the first half was, as previously mentioned, for Beşiktaş hitman Demba Ba. He had a good attempt at goal but Simon Mignolet just maanged to get his fingers to it.

2. half

Liverpool was more dominant in the second half and pressed the Black Eagles back on their own half. It did not result in any major chances however.

A little past the hour mark Liverpool brought on striker Mario Balotelli who gave them more presence up front.

Beşiktaş also made two changes, José Sosa was taken off for Oguzhan and Olcay was taken off for Kerim Frei. Kerim probably created the most dangerous attack of the second half for the Black Eagles as he rushed down the left wing and pulled it back towards the penalty point, Demba Ba just couldn’t reach the ball as he attempted a backheel flick but Liverpool’s defence managed to scramble the ball away.

As the 90-minute mark drew closer Beşiktaş was retaining possession more frequently. But in the 83rd minute Mario Balotelli won the ball around the halfway line, the Beşiktaş players appealed for a foul as Balotelli won the ball with a dangerously high foot but the Polish referee allowed the game to go on. Ibe took the ball up the pitch and beat Ramon Motta to cut inside the box. Motta returned with a clumsy challenge and caused a penalty kick.

There was some discussion among the Liverpool players whether to whom would take the penalty, Balotelli won the battle of egos and stepped up behind the ball. He scored the only goal of the game from the spot sending Cenk Gönen the wrong way.

Beşiktaş created some pressure after the goal and came close to scoring on an Oguzhan free-kick but Pedro Franco just couldn’t put his foot to the cross and the ball went out of play.

There weren’t any more major chances created in the remainder of the game, Liverpool looked dangerous a few times on the break but couldn’t create any more major chances.


In the end the Black Eagles played a decent game and perhaps deserved a bit more from the game, but the result remains the same. Beşiktaş will need atleast two goals next Thrusday at the Atatürk Olimpiyat without conceding any themselves and will have to do so without Ersan Gülüm and Ramon Motta who are both suspended due to yellow card accumilation.


Stadium: Anfield

Officials: Szymon Marciniak, Pawel Sokolnicki, Tomasz Listkiewicz, Radoslaw Siejka (4th official)
Beşiktaş: Cenk Gönen; Serdar, Pedro Franco, Ersan, Motta; Veli Kavlak, Atiba Hutchinson, Gökhan Töre, José Sosa (60′ Oğuzhan), Olcay (72′ Kerim), Demba Ba

Reserves: Enes Fidayeo, Daniel Opare, Necip Uysal, Tolgay Arslan, Kerim Frei, Oğuzhan Özyakup, Mustafa Pektemek

Head coach: Slaven Bilic

Liverpool: Mignolet; Sakho, Moreno, Skrtel; Coutinho (63′ Balotelli), Allen (63′ Lovren), Henderson, Lallana (77′ Sterling), Ibe, Emre Can, Sturridge
Reserves: Ward, Manquillo, Lovren, Sterling, Borini, Lambert, Balotelli
Head coach: Brendan Rodgers

Goal: Balotelli (85′ Pen.)

Yellow card(s): Ersan (44′), Lovren (69′), Serdar (77′), Motta (84′), Pedro (90+3′)

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Kaan Bayazit

Editor-in-chief at Beşiktaş International
Freelance sports writer specialized in Turkish football and Beşiktaş. Co-host of the Black Eagles podcast. Frequently featured in World Soccer Digest Japan and many other international media outlets. Following Turkish football for close to two decades. Proud father to Aedin.
Kaan Bayazit
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