Football (Soccer)

Ano’s Football History:

Started playing at 5 years old. Began playing in their local football school called Rabti at 6 and had impressing displays for a starter at 6. Also continued playing in the same local football school until he was 8 and although he had a great year when he was 7, he was not selected for a team to participate in tournaments.

Later on Ano and Ardi changed their football school to a more prestigous and bigger one called Heydarnia. They were taught a lot of new stuff there. Ano in particular struggled to settle in there but after a while he was all good and even had impressive displays against older opponents at 10. Having been there for 2 years, Ano had much better passing and crossing skills. Although again, he was not found to be good enough to join the side in the tournaments.

Playing in parks and streets to keep up with his football life was all he did until they moved to Istanbul, Turkey when he was 13.
The very first impression of him playing in a different country with other kids in there was that they played much faster and were very much technical in their footballing approach.

Soon he adapted to the more mature football of Turkey and he started playing with newly-found friends in parks and turf grounds.

At first, there was in fact much to adapt to for Ano but after continuing to play like that for nearly 4 more years, he finally got to a point that he was called up for a local U-19 team, Fatih Yaylaspor. The team which he eventually got selected for and he trained with for a year and a half.

He was determined to get better and better and that’s why he focused on getting all the training he can during the summer the year he was selected by Demir Dizdar, the U-19 coach of Fatih Yaylaspor at that time.
But that wasn’t really enough. As more and more talented players joined the squad in autumn leading to the start of the league.
He did his best to be in the starting line up in games and upped his game day by day.
The coach in fact told him that he will in fact be in the squad, rest assured. But as it turns out, there was nothing to be assured of, as he was not even eligible to play under the Turkish Football Federation laws.
The laws clearly state that foreigner youth players wishing to play in the leagues should have either a work permit or a continued residence permit with a validity of at least a year.
He didn’t have that, as he only had a 6 months visa renewed every half year. He continued training with the team and was not even given a chance at any friendly games as at the same appeals were sent to the federation and new visa applications were filled.

The coach felt if he played him in any friendlies, it would be unnecessary and a waste of resources… Until their last friendly game against local rivals Koca Mustafa Paşa. The coach gave Ano a chance at playing the last 12 minutes of the friendly game by substituting him for the team’s leading striker. The game was 4-1 for Koca Mustafa Paşa and the striker he was coming on for hadn’t scored in the game. Just after Ano was subbed and before he got to their own field, Koca Mustafa Paşa scored their 5th goal. It was all impossible to win now and with Ano on nobody would have thought any comeback is possible. And it wasn’t, but a signal of it did appear. Just 5 minutes after his arrival, he setup a teammate with a well-taken pass that allowed him to be one-on-one with the keeper and he scored. 5-2 it was with Ano’s assist. Of course it wasn’t enough at all but still the Fatih Yaylaspor players did like a goal back. Then 5 more minutes passed and after a teammate’s shot had been taken by the KMP goalkeeper, Ano was just lurking there that the goalkeeper made a mistake in clearing the ball off, that Ano took advantage of and made it 5-3 to everybody’s surprise. The game ended with the same result, but he showed his intent and skills in that game which was just about enough for then.

He did not get to play in any official league games for Fatih Yaylaspor because he could not acquire the needed work permit at all. Later on the club he starred against, KMP, offered to have him as their player for next season and he trained for 8 months with them. Although KMP initially were definitely interested in Ano, they were having a hard time figuring a way to get the work permit for him. And even before the leagues started in that year, Ano was involved in a verbal fight with the then Koca Mustafa Paşa coach, Kazım “Maradona” Korur which made him leave the club much earlier than expected. Kazım Korur was later dismissed as KMP coach, almost 4 months later, but that was also when the U-19 league was finished and they had finished just a spot clear of relegation. Kazım Korur had told Ano that he “sucked and didn’t even deserve to play in ANY team, let alone ours”.

Then in the 2009-2010 season, he tried all the ways possible for him to actually play in a club officially.

But all the 2009-2010 season could bring was just more experience playing with others in as many matches as possible.

The 2010-2011 season was perhaps the breakthrough season where he had 3 training sessions with Bati Trakya Football Club of Istanbul and although his short term performance wasn’t as impressive as he used to be, he was labelled as “below average”.

After that, he trained under some former professional football players and added what could possibly be some of the missing links in his game.

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