Derby day looms for...somebody

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Outraged, abused and let down - three phrases to sum up the blog’s feelings right now.

Having slaved away on Tuesday evening, one eye on Ronaldinho in Madrid and the other on the computer screen, Galatasaray officials were preparing for a press conference that would ruin a whole article.

After a strong drink and several deep breaths the blog can inform with renewed inspiration that Galatasaray manager Frank Rijkaard has been relieved of his duties just days before the super clasico of all clasico derbies at Fenerbahce.

This wise move comes off the back of a weekend in which everybody associated with Cimbom suffered an evening of humiliation...and a 4-2 home defeat to Ankaragucu.

Hardly the morale boost needed for a team already in the knowledge that they have failed to win on enemy soil in over a decade. Let alone without a permanent manager!

Given this rush of news, it is probably better that I find myself writing this while thousands of feet in the air en route to Istanbul with just a handful of morning papers to flick through – all of which had no idea of the Dutchman’s departure when going to print on Tuesday night.

Fatih Terim – who I’m told rejected an offer to take over on Wednesday – was the afternoon favourite along with Cimbom legend Gheorghe Hagi.

If reports are to be believed, the Romanian’s appointment move would also see the arrival of a number of players from the 2000 Uefa Cup winning side - namely Ergun Penbe, Hasan Sas and Tugay Kerimoglu who has taken over temporary charge.

Aside from pre-derby palaver there is the small matter of a Europa League tie involving Besiktas and Porto. It will be a special night for Ricardo Quaresma who will be looking to get one over a former club.

The Portuguese is still a doubt for tomorrow’s game, but this blog senses that a series of tactical injections will see the dazzling winger take his place and continue stepping over...and over...and over.

A mention of Europe would not be complete without reference to Bursaspor - however depressing it may be – who once again pleased the pessimists.

Ertugrul Saglam claimed his side ‘had a chance’ before the game, a feeling dashed by Nani’s impressive strike that kept the Green Crocodiles rock bottom of group C.

Six against - zero for in Europe....and counting.

Sometimes a little bit of hope is all you need. It is something, however, that Frank Rijkaard ran out of a while ago.

STOP PRESS: Since this blog was published, Galatasaray have confirmed Gheorghe Hagi as their new manager...