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The Five Stages of Turkey’s Separation From Europe!

by | Mar 14, 2021

Everyone knows about the defeats and eliminations Turkey encountered on the Europe stage in the last years. Well, where did it take Turkey? They separated from Europe, now let’s look at the stages of Turkey’s separation from Europe.

According to 5-year current League rankings, Turkey is in 13th place. Next year Turkey will fall in the League to 17th place. In other words, their champion will play preselection to go to the Champions League. They will have to deal with the countries that do not play football as their primary sport for UEFA’s new organization Confederation Cup.

In this analysis, I will study each league Turkey fall from in stages of separation and I’ll evaluate the opinions of football lovers in Turkey. The 5 parameters I chose are Attacking actions, Successful attacking actions, Defensive actions, Successful defensive actions, and Pressing Duels. The first 4 parameters are giving us an insight into how much action was done in the match in the leagues. The last parameter, pressing duels, gives the impression of the permission and tempo of the leagues to the action. Before we jump on to separation stages, I’d like to add that Turkey is under every league I compare in the first 4 parameters. Turkish Super League is only ahead of the other four in the pressing duels parameter. We can conclude that generally shadow press is applied in the 50cm diameter area during the opposition player’s control in the Turkish League.

1. Denial

In this first stage, one of the partners cannot accept the reality of the separation. They think that their partner will come back to them at some point even if they don’t have a partner anymore. The champion of the Turkish League won’t be able to participate in the Champions League immediately. As we observed in the past years, the team of the Turkish League participates in European League if get lucky in the Champion’s League preselection. As I extracted from the surveys, 50% of the country still in the denial phase and thinks that Turkey is the 6th most quality League after the top 5.

Even though there are no extreme differences, Serbia is ahead of Turkey in matters of action. As the parameters show, Serbia will be in Turkey’s previous ranking, 13th place, even if they play a less pressured game.

Which league do you think is better quality?
Turkey: %53
Serbia: %38
Same: %9

2. Anger

In this stage, the partner who cannot handle the separation becomes violent to those around them. They may say to their ex-partner such things as: “Ivan Bebek was unfair to us in Europe”, “The referee was unbearable at the Dinamo Kiev match”; or to those around them “They did us in the eye to go to Champions League every year”, “They are not helping us with the fixture when it comes to matches with European teams.” 

The second League we’ll analyze is the Southern Cyprus League. In this survey, football fans claimed that the Turkish League was better than the Southern Cyprus League.

The Southern Cyprus League has gained great popularity with AEL Limassol lately. They are also able to grant comfort and freedom because they are a part of the European Union. The middle-row team stopper of Southern Cyprus, Atilla, is a great example of where we are in terms of gameplay.

Which league do you think is better quality?
Cyprus: %46
Turkey: %53
Same: %1

3. Bargaining

Bargaining is the stage where the abandoned partner shows their ex that they are ready to everything to get back together. That they are better now. “Our League will be better, and we’ll provide foreign referee” an example of the effort for joining back to UEFA. In this stage, good old days are often mentioned. “We were undefeated leaders in the group”, “We kept Real Madrid in defense for 20 minutes”, “Sow’s kickback was spectacular” are some of them. We can still see how much interaction the Champions League and UEFA European League gather with the old achievement of Turkish teams in their social media accounts. The obsession with the past is almost morbid. The volatile feelings of the Turkish football fans and their reaction to it are self-explanatory.

Croatian League will be placed in 16th place, one step above the Turkish League, next year. Croatia played in the World Cup finals in 2018 and they are one of the sole countries I believe to improve themselves with the sports culture they have. Croatian League might evolve even more after the return of stars like Modric, Rakitic, Brozovic with their contributions and with countries putting their eyes on Balkan geography for their new talent search.

Which league do you think is better quality?
Turkey: %49
Croatia: %37
Same: %14

4. Depression

This stage is the hardest part of the separation. Mistakes of the past are reviewed with a lot of regrets. Sentences like “I wish he hadn’t played with substitutes”, “I wish we took the pre-selection process seriously” might be a part of this stage. To pass this stage as a whole country, Turkey must wait until the 2022-2023 season where they cannot send their champion directly to the Champion’s League. 

I left the most interesting survey result to this part: In a survey that compares Switzerland League to Turkish League, Turkish football fans put Switzerland League above Turkish League. In addition to previous comparisons and the effect of Switzerland showing the best parameters by far, the reputation of Switzerland was also one of the important factors affecting the result. It is very sad that Switzerland, which will be Turkey’s competitor in EURO 2021 this summer, will come in front of them.

Switzerland League seems to slam in difficulty and gameplay. There is no reason for Switzerland not to use the resources of the rising Balkan football due to its geographical advantage and socioeconomic power. They will be in 15th place and will be attracting the best players.

Which league do you think is better quality?
Turkey: %45
Switzerland: %48
Same: %7

5. Acceptance

This is the part where the reality of the separation is accepted. The relationship cannot be upheld even with bargaining or for the sake of good old times. What should we accept as Turkish Football at this stage?

The top 5 League has a hierarchy among themselves. England is at the top. Italy and Germany are right beside it. Turkish League cannot come near to the top 5 Leagues because football is a Western European sport. Football’s homeland will always be Western Europe although Turkey has very old teams.

Countries like the Netherlands, Belgium, Scotland are integrated into Western European football due to their borders. The greatest reformist of football, Cryuff, finished the revolution he started in Holland in Spain. Russia, on the other hand, will always be in certain places with the economic power of its oligarchs.

We saw the Turkish League in certain places behind North and Western Europe for a long time. It was the perfect place for us if you ask me. The economic crisis, player circulation among teams, detaching from Europe are also important factors in the drop-down of the Turkey League from East European Leagues.

As I mentioned in my previous article, “How Would the Turkish National Team Play 3-4-3?” National Team players are playing in Leagues outside the Turkish League for the first time in their history. Turkish National Team turned into a traditional Eastern European Country National Team. 

Their skilled valuable players are starting to prefer Northern and Western European countries, even at the academy level. It wouldn’t be a surprise to lose their talented players to Balkan teams in the coming years. 

Turkish Super League, losing its value, is not the only reason for this fall. As the Turkish Super League loses value; Balkan countries and Southern Cyprus have mended the wounds of the crises they have experienced in the past 15 years. Balkan countries continued the sports culture left over from the Yugoslavia system and Switzerland also benefited from it. Southern Cyprus improved its League with close relations to European Union. To sum up, these are the 5 stages of Turkey’s separation from Europe from my perspective.

I also want to thank Psychologist İdil Salih for their contributions to this article.

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We could say that Oğuzhan Ertaş is the thinker of modern times. Connecting the dots between football analysis, literature & culture; he pictures football as the reflection of life. His profession is pharmacy.