Back to the Near FutureCommentary • Author: Emre Kızılkaya • Saturday, May 10, 2008
(Disclaimer: This article, written by our good friend Emre Kizilkaya, was originally published in the Turkish section of Fenerbahce Worldwide on the 14th of April, however I did not get the chance to translate it until today. I apologize for the delay, and hope you will enjoy the article)
Something strange happened in the 82nd minute of the second leg of UEFA Champions League which pitted Fenerbahce and Chelsea against each other.
Chelsea was leading the game 1-0, and all Fener needed to advance to the Semi Finals was one goal.
The Yellow Canaries had been dominating Chelsea for the past 10 minutes, forcing them to close down completely in their own half. The possession numbers were very close to each other.
The cameras were watching the Chelsea fans closely, who had very troubled looks on their faces. The British fans were in a worried silence, whereas the 3000 or so Fenerbahce fans were shaking Stamford Bridge with "Burası Kadıköy, Buradan Çıkış Yok!" cheers. (This is Kadikoy, There is No Way Out!)
At exactly 82.59, when Fenerbahce came extremely close to scoring that goal they need to advance to the next round, for the second time in one minute, the space-time continuum ripped.
Those who were watching the game closely saw the future in a tear that came into being just above Stamford Bridge. In that future, Fenerbahce was landing in Istanbul with the "European Champions" title.
This was not a hallucination, but rather a projection, or a miracle-like prophetic vision of the future.
After this moment of "back to the near future", we came back to the here and now, where Chelsea barely escaped Fenerbahce's wrath unscathed and advanced to the semi finals. That Fenerbahce had already established itself as one of the 8 best teams of Europe this season.
Throughout the whole 90 minutes, the Chelsea fans had to endure the everlasting chants of the 3000 Fenerbahce fans, and even after they scored the second goal, they had their doubts and fears of "what if the match goes on to the penalties?" Their anxiety could be easily read from their faces.
I doubt that no one from Fenerbahce was crushed by this defeat at the late stages of the Champions League. Everyone in Turkey will be proud of Fenerbahce, and this would have been the case regardless of another goal that might have been scored against Chelsea.
Fenerbahce and its fans, who saw the near future during the Chelsea game, have shown that they are ready to make an impact on European football in the next 10 years. Furthermore, with this year's Champions League campaign, they have also proven that they have a solid and working plan for achieving this goal.
Fenerbahce failed to qualify to the next stage, but showed they have the potential.
Even at defeat, Fenerbahce was victorious in this year's European campaign.