STSL week 1: Beşiktaş – Antalyaspor

Updated: August 13, 2017

A new season, new ambitions. Defending Champions Beşiktaş look to extend their title by another year as they open the season against last season’s number 5: Antalyaspor.

Antalyaspor are still coached by ex-Beşiktaş captain Riza ‘Atom Karinka’ Çalımbay who played for the Black Eagles between 1980 and 1996. Antalyaspor have made several impressive moves on the transfer market this summer, adding to their already quality squad. Their most famous player is obviously Samuel Eto’o, who’s been wearing the red and white striped shirt for two years now. But Antalyaspor added several new big name signings to their squad this Summer, including French striker Jeremy Menez, who is sidelined with an injury, and former Tottenham midfielder Sandro. They also filled the key role of goalkeeper with Eskişehirspor’s Belgian keeper Ruud Boffin, a position which they had struggled with in recent years.

Cenk Tosun scored 24 times last term and already got off the mark last Sunday in the Super Cup for the 2017/18 season! Can he add to his tally tonight?

Antalyaspor will certainly offer Beşiktaş a good challenge on the opening matchday, with fans being barred from attending due to the escalations during the Turkish Super Cup against Konyaspor.

Beşiktaş weren’t too shabby on the transfer market themselves but they aren’t expecting to immediately start with a bunch of their new signings. Álvaro Negredo and Jeremain Lens will likely start on the bench with Pepe being the only new acquisition who is expected to start. Gökhan Gönül, who underwent surgerdy last week, will be out for 6-7 more weeks and will be replaced with Andreas Beck in the starting lineup. Adriano picked up a knock in training earlier this week but is fit enough to play, however Caner Erkin is expected to start ahead of him in order not to risk the Brazilian.

Anderson Talisca makes his return after missing out on the Super Cup due to the delay in his paperwork being sent over by Benfica, however FIFA have since resolved the issue and Talisca is eligible to play tonight against Antalyaspor.

Apart from the addition of Pepe, Caner and Beck in the team it will be largely the same ‘typical eleven’ as last season, with Atiba Hutchinson making his return in the starting eleven.

Spor Toto Süper Lig
Beşiktaş JK – Antalyaspor
Location: Vodafone Park
Referee: Cüneyt Çakır
Date: Sunday, August 13th
Time: 20:45 (CET)
Channel: beIN Sports HD 1

Beşiktaş predicted XI:

Fabri; Andreas Beck, Pepe, Dusko Tosic, Caner Erkin; Atiba Hutchinson, Oğuzhan Özyakup, Anderson Talisca; Quaresma, Cenk Tosun, Ryan Babel

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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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