Most of Fenerbahce Fans Trust Obradovic

Most of Fenerbahce Fans Trust Obradovic

The websites KiaEnZona and Gigantes from Spain, asked me what is going on with Fenerbahce Beko this season. I have tried to explain my opinions, you can read below.

Fenerbahçe Beko which succeed to make last 5 Final Fours, couldn’t start Turkish Airlines Euroleague season 2019 – 2020 as well as expected.  Fenerbahçe Beko is now  2-6 and 3 wins behind of the playoffs bound. Why Fenerbahçe Beko has started to the season such bad?

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It wouldn’t be wrong to say that the problems started to appear last year.

Let me indicate the source of the problem initially; I think that the main problem is not technical; it is not about preferences of the transfered players, eighter. In my opinion, the main issue is physical troubles and the psychological burn out that are result of physical troubles

Fenerbahçe had an amazing season last year and finished the regular season as the leader of Euroleague. They played 18 games against the best 10 teams in Euroleague last year and won 15 of them. Moreover they played 9 away games against these teams and won 6 of them. By the end of this amazing season, injuries started to occur and followed each other. These deficiencies burn out the team seriously.

Beginning of the season, Tyler Ennis injured.  Althought he was replaced with Eric Green, Joffrey Lauvergne’s injury became the beginning of the all problems. Afterwards, Jan Vesely, Nikola Kalinic and Luigi Datome also got injured; Bobby Dixon followed them in Final Four.

Before Final Four games, they couldn’t practice enough as a full complement and it was known that the injured players were not ready. Not only the injured players but also the rest of the team were knocked down a lot phisically.

Lauvergne and Datome were out, Vesely and Kalinic were not ready to play in Final Four. On the first day of Final Four, Fenerbahçe faced Anadolu Efes. Anadolu Efes played very well and won the game by 19 points with an amazing effort. Bobby Dixon got injured in the game and couldn’t play aganist Real Madrid in the 3rd place game. Fenerbahce lost aganist Real Madrid down 19 points again and finished Final Four without a win after having a great season with full of breaking records and completing the regular season as the leader.

There is a big competition between Fenerbahçe and Anadolu Efes and also an ongoing tension between head coach Ergin Ataman and Fenerbahçe fans for many years. This ongoing tension made a peak in  Euroleague final game and continued increasingly until Turkish League final series. By the series extended, mutual statements increased the tension. The series extended to game 7. The importance of the game and the pressure on the team  went up too much. After Fenerbahçe lost the game, this loss burn the team out so much.

Before new Euroleague season starts, Fenebahçe and Anadolu Efes played for President Cup again. If Fenerbahçe won this cup, they’d cheer up before the season. But they lost again and the pressure on the team increased again. Nothing were helping Fenerbahçe to get rid of this physcological situation.

New Euroleague season started and Fenerbahçe lost aganist Real Madrid in the first game, despite they were fighting well and having a very close game . Fenerbahce missed the chance of starting the season with a win and cheering up. Players who had injuries couldn’t catch their old  performances. Afterwards, when they lost aganist Crvena Zvezda in Belgrad in the 2nd round, the pressure on the team increased again and this defeat knocked the team down mentally more than before.

Not only the injured players but also the rest of the team started to have problems because of having more minutes  and role in the team; this situation phsically wore them out. While they were very good at the team defense and helping each other by having their backs last year, their team defense weakened this year because of the injured players’s insufficient performances. Shortfalls at individual performances became unsolvable level, then the players became the target of the criticisims. These things demoralized the team and decreased the self confidence of the players.

The players who already knocked down physically, they had to play a lot of away games because of the bad Euroleague fixture. They played 4 of the first 5 games on the road; Madrid, Milano and Maccabi who are in the first 8 at the standings were 3 of them. Fenerbahce’s most scorer player Nando De Colo couldn’t join the team for the game in Moscow because of his injury and Fenerbahçe lost aganist last champ CSKA.

Thus, Fenerbahçe played first 5 games of 8 on the road and 4 of these teams stand in the playoffs seed now. Fenerbaçe absolutely should have won Zalgris game at home but altough they leaded the game by 7 till the last minute, Fenerbahce made back to back big mistakes and had the first home loss of the season. Pyshcological collapse made a peak here.

When we look at the fixture and standings, the problems are not as big as reflected and Fenerbahçe can overcome of this situation. There will be 34 games played in total and the teams which have 18-19 wins are going to make  playoffs.

At the rest of the season, Fenerbahçe won’t play a lot of difficult away games like this period of the year. They’ll play 17 games at home in total and they just played 3 of them. If they can’t become the one of first 4 teams that will make playoffs with home court advantage, even if they make playoffs as the 8th place, Fenerbahce will still have equal change on the all possible match-up.  When Fenerbahçe became the Euroleague Champion, they matched with Panathinaikos and the home court advantage was at Panathinaikos. And Fenerbahçe completed those series with 3-0.

The players will be stronger pyschically by time and when they catch some winnig series, it’ll also effect the team in a very positive way. They’ll also be mentally stronger.

I’ve mentioned about the last year’s away games wins above and Panathinaikos series to point out that even if Fenerbahçe can’t have the home advantage in playoffs, they will have the chance at least as much as the possible opponent.

Fenerbahçe is still one the strong candidates for Final Four. However, once a team which achieves to attend F4, will have chance to get the title as much as the others.

Turgay Doğan

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