HomeFootballPreview: Besiktas vs. Galatasaray - prediction, team news, lineups

Preview: Besiktas vs. Galatasaray – prediction, team news, lineups


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Sports Mole previews Sunday’s Turkish Super Lig clash between Besiktas and Galatasaray, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Besiktas host Galatasaray at the Tupras Stadyumu this Sunday in what is one of the biggest matches in the Turkish Super Lig season.

The hosts would move into third place with anything other than a defeat until at least Trabzonspor’s game on Monday, while a win for the visitors would see them remain at the top of the league and could result in them extending their lead depending on Fenerbahce’s result.

Match preview

© Reuters

Besiktas head into this game level on 46 points with Trabzonspor, but due to an inferior goal difference they currently sit in fourth place.

A draw or win in this one would therefore see Besiktas leapfrog the Black Sea Storm and enter the UEFA Europa League qualification place, until at least Trabzonspor’s game against Alanyaspor on Monday.

Kara Kartallar have had a difficult season so far with current manager Fernando Santos being the fifth of the campaign following on from Senol Gunes and Riza Calimbay, while Burak Yilmaz and Serdar Topraktepe also had stints as interim managers.

Santos’s start to life at Besiktas was a difficult one as, despite winning his first three games, his side then had a three-game spell where they failed to record a victory or score a goal.

Besiktas’ fortunes have had an upturn since then though, now on a six-game undefeated run which has seen them concede just a single goal.

While the Black Eagles have lost on three occasions in front of their fans this season, their home record against Galatasaray in recent years is something that will give them plenty of confidence ahead of Sunday’s game.

The current league leaders have failed to win in the league at the Tupras Stadyumu since a 2-0 victory in January 2015, with Besiktas winning seven of the eight meetings since that result.

Despite these recent outcomes, Galatasaray are sure to go into this game as strong favourites owing to their incredible season to date; after 27 league games they have claimed 72 out of a possible 81 points, only dropping points in three draws and one loss.

Even with this fantastic season so far, a victory for Galatasaray here is still hugely important with Fenerbahce right on their tails with 70 points, having also lost on just a single occasion this season.

However, Aslanlar have seen a slight falter in their recent games with two losses coming in their last three.

The first of those defeats saw them knocked out of the Europa League in agonising fashion as they conceded three times in the final 16 minutes of their second leg against Sparta Prague to throw away their 3-2 lead from the first leg, losing 4-1 on the night and 6-4 on aggregate – a result which was followed by a melee after the final whistle.

Top scorer Mauro Icardi was then banned for their next league fixture against Antalyaspor due to inappropriate behaviour in a game earlier this month, although they did manage to win that match 2-1 in his absence.

The league leaders then fell to defeat once again in their last outing as Fatih Karagumruk won 2-0 in the Turkish Cup quarter-finals, meaning that they now have just the league to focus on having been dreaming of a possible treble a little more than a week ago.

Besiktas Turkish Super Lig form:

Besiktas form (all competitions):

Galatasaray Turkish Super Lig form:

Galatasaray form (all competitions):

Team News

Galatasaray's Mauro Icardi celebrates scoring their third goal with teammates on February 15, 2024© Reuters

Besiktas will be without multiple key players due to both injuries and suspension, leaving Santos with plenty to think about regarding his lineup.

The most noticeable absence will be that of Gedson Fernandes, who has started 21 of the 27 league games this season. The former Tottenham Hotspur midfielder is ruled out with a suspension for this game, as is Bakhtiyar Zaynutdinov.

Elsewhere, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Tayfur Bingol remain out with thigh injuries and Amir Hadziahmetovic is expected to be out for the remainder of the season with a cruciate ligament injury.

Galatasaray, on the other hand, are looking as though they will have their whole squad available for the game.

Striker Icardi has been out of the matchday squad for two straight games, with the first being due to a suspension from the Turkish Football Federation that ruled him out of Galatasaray’s last league game. The Argentine is expected to return and lead the line against Besiktas.

Besiktas possible starting lineup:
Gunok; Bulut, Uysal, Colley, Masuaku; Al Musrati, Amartey; Rashica, Muci, Tosun; Kilicsoy

Galatasaray possible starting lineup:
Muslera; Kohn, Nelsson, Sanchez, Yilmaz; Torreira, Demirbay; Akturkoglu, Mertens, Tete; Icardi

SM words green background

We say: Besiktas 1-2 Galatasaray

Besiktas have been in good form heading into this game, not losing in any of their last six matches across all competitions, and have enjoyed a lengthy spell of success against Galatasaray when playing in front of a home crowd.

However, Galatasaray have been almost faultless in the league this season and are strong favourites to take home the three points.

While we do expect this to be a tight encounter between two of Turkey’s top sides, we believe that Galatasaray will do enough to claim the victory and potentially extend their lead at the top of the Turkish Super Lig.

For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.

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