Istanbul will hold its breath on Saturday as heavyweights Fenerbahce and Galatasaray collide in a top-of-the-table Süper Lig clash (4pm kick-off, UK time).
Few fixtures capture the imagination quite like the Intercontinental Derby between Fenerbahce and Galatasaray, but this aptly named Eternal Rivalry takes on a deeper significance this weekend, as it’s first vs second. A proverbial six-pointer like no other.
How to live stream Fenerbahce vs Galatasaray online:
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Where to watch Fenerbahce vs Galatasaray on TV:
- UK: N/A
- US: N/A
Scoreline prediction: Fenerbahce 2-2 Galatasaray
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Fenerbahce vs Galatasaray build-up, previous line-ups & injury news:
This blockbuster bout already has the hallmarks of a classic before a ball has even been kicked. Just three points currently separates Fenerbahce in first from Galatasaray in second, while Mesut Ozil stoked the flames that he could be making his full debut this weekend after this not-so-cryptic tweet:
— Mesut Özil (@MesutOzil1088) February 4, 2021
To add to the drama, Fenerbahce are aiming to end a seven-year wait for title glory, having last secured the top-flight crown in 2014, but they face an ominous encounter against the competition’s most successful club, Galatasaray, who have clinched the title a record 22 times.
Erol Bulut’s side have been in stellar form recently and are currently enjoying a 10-game unbeaten run, posting nine victories in that time. But, Fatih Terim’s Galatasaray have been as impressive since the turn of the year, winning their last four games by an aggregate scoreline of 12-3.
- Fenerbahce (vs Hatayspor): Bayindir; Sangare, Aziz, Szalai, Erkin; Osayi-Samuel, Gustavo*, Tufan, Thiam; Valencia, Yandas.
- Galatasaray (vs Istanbul Basaksehir): Muslera; Linnes, Donk, Marcao, Saracchi; Antalyali, Kilinc, Etebo, Arda, Onyekuru; Babel.
Mesut Ozil made his Fenerbahce bow earlier this week, coming on as a second-half substitute against Hatayspor, and he could be in line to make his first start this weekend. Elsewhere, former Roma attacker Diego Perotti will miss the remainder of the season after sustaining a serious knee injury last month. He joins Sinan Gumus, Ferdi Kadioglu and Marcel Tisserand on the sidelines.
Luiz Gustavo is also out of this contest in a major blow for the hosts, while Jose Sosa and Dimitrios Pelkas are also doubts.
For the visitors, they are without Omar Elabdellaoui, Emre Tasdemir, Ogulcan Caglayan, Sener Ozbayrakli, Sofiane Feghouli and January signing Gedson Fernandes. DeAndre Yedlin could make his debut.
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Players to watch:
Fenerbahce: It was only last month that Bright Osayi-Samuel netted a late equaliser at Carrow Road for QPR against Norwich. Fast forward a few weeks and he has traded nights in Norfolk for one of football’s most adrenaline-fuelled derbies. This is not a contest for the faint-hearted, so the 23-year-old will have to keep his composure in check and not let the occasion get the better of him. The wily winger proved a tremendous talent in the capital for QPR in the first half of the campaign and had a few Premier League clubs reportedly in the queue for his signature. But he has taken his talents to Istanbul, where he will hope to elevate his status further and help end Fenerbahce’s long wait for a title.
Galatasaray: DeAndre Yedlin was picked up on deadline day and he will be champing at the bit to get going for his new employers. Whether he is given a baptism of fire in this derby remains to be seen, but in the long run, Yedlin could go on to prove a very astute piece of business. On his day he is an adventurous, all-action full-back who offers plenty of zip and energy down the right flank, which, if Terim is able to unlock that potential, should provide Galatasaray with renewed impetus and an energetic output in wide areas.
Süper Lig 2020/21 recent form:
- Fenerbahce: WWWDW
- Galatasaray: WWWWL
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