Galatasaray and Fenerbahce are joining forces to help block the Turkish Super Cup match from happening in Saudi Arabia. The game is on Dec. 29 at Al-Awwal Park in Riyadh. Nevertheless, the two rival teams have proposed to face off at an alternative domestic arena instead.
Yasser Al-Misehal, the president of the Saudi Arabian Football Federation, recently declared that the match is happening in his native country. “We are pleased that Saudi Arabia will host the Turkish Super Cup match, which includes two of the largest clubs in Turkey and at the European level, and it will undoubtedly be a competitive and exciting match,” proclaimed Al-Misehal.
Al-Awwal Park is a relatively new stadium but has already hosted some marquee matchups. This includes the ‘Maradona Cup’ between Barcelona and Boca Juniors back in 2021. The game honored the late Argentine star. The stadium is also currently the home arena of Saudi Pro League side Al Nassr. Global superstars Cristiano Ronaldo, Sadio Mane, and Aymeric Laporte currently play for the club.
Fener execs propose two possible venues for the game
Despite the match set for Saudi Arabia, the two Turkish teams involved are attempting to make a late change of venue. Fenerbahce officials raised a motion regarding the game during a board meeting on Sunday. The executives named either the Ataturk Stadium or the Samsun 19 Mayıs Stadium as potential hosts of the game.
Ataturk Stadium is in Istanbul and previously hosted the latest 2023 UEFA Champions League Final. Fellow Turkish Super Lig club Fatih Karagümrük currently calls the arena home. With a capacity of nearly 75,000 fans, it is also the largest stadium in the country.
Meanwhile, Samsun 19 Mayıs Stadium is a much smaller but newer arena. Samsunspor plays their home Super Lig games at the stadium, as does the Turkey national team on occasion. The motion to host the Turkish Super Cup game at either of these two stadiums was unanimously agreed upon at the meeting.
Turkish Super Cup in Saudi Arabia takes away from independence day
Galatasaray agreed with their rivals and held a similar meeting on Monday as well. The club asked for the game to happen in Turkey to mark the 100th anniversary of the nation’s independence. In a statement, Galatasaray declared that the match needs to be played “in the Turkish homeland, which our ancestors won and protected with their blood, lives, ideas, and wisdom.”
The Turkish team also called on young citizens to “watch the match in the lands they own and experience this feeling within the borders of the Republic of Turkey in the 100th anniversary of our Republic, with national consciousness, regardless of which team they support.”
The upcoming Turkish Super Cup will feature the top two teams in the nation. Galatasaray is currently leading Fenerbahce in the league standings by just one point. The two rivals will also be fairly familiar with each other in the upcoming match as well. Fenerbahce is hosting Galatasaray in Turkish Super Lig play just five days before the Super Cup.
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