Turkey head coach Fatih Terim has urged supporters to get behind the side in their crucial Group D showdown with Czech Republic on Tuesday.
A 1-0 loss to Croatia on matchday one was followed by a tame 3-0 defeat at the hands of holders Spain, leaving Terim’s side a point adrift at the bottom of the table.
Fans made their feelings clear during the loss to Spain, with a number aiming boos towards midfielder Arda Turan following another disappointing display, leaving the head coach frustrated.
But Terim insists that the team need plenty of support at Stade Bollaert-Delelis in Lens in order to get the victory they need to keep alive their hopes of progressing to the last 16 as one of the top third-placed teams.
“Nobody should doubt that I’ll do what is necessary. Myself and the team want to express that we are sincerely sorry,” said Terim.
“For those who do support us, please keep up that support for the match against the Czech Republic.”
Czech Republic also suffered defeat to Spain, but came from 2-0 down to rescue a draw with Croatia in their second match, thanks to Tomas Necid’s 89th-minute penalty.
The striker expects a tough test against a Turkey side who they faced during Euro 2016 qualifying – where each team claimed an away victory – but is confident they can take the win required to put pressure on second-placed Croatia, who must avoid defeat to Spain to ensure they progress.
“Turkey are a very strong side, they have a lot of good players who play for top teams. As a team, they have good link-up play and plenty of flair,” he told UEFA.com.
“This could be a chance for us. We played against them twice in qualifying – we lost once and won once. It is going to be a different game now, but I believe that there will be a winning end to the group stage for us.”
Head coach Pavel Vrba confirmed this week that he will make “three to four changes” to his starting line-up, with Tomas Rosicky certain to miss out due to a thigh injury. Turkey, meanwhile, have concerns over a knee problem to Nuri Sahin.
The teams have met once before in a major competition, when Terim’s side came from 2-0 down to win 3-2 at Euro 2008 in Geneva – a result which sent Turkey into the quarter-finals.
Key Opta Stats:
– There have been 31 goals in the last nine games between these two nations, with at least two goals being scored in each of those nine fixtures.
– If Petr Cech plays, he will equal the Czech record for most games at major tournaments: 17, currently held by Karel Poborsky. Only Peter Schmeichel has conceded more goals (20) than Cech (19) in Euros history.
– Czech striker Tomas Necid has scored twice as many goals as a substitute (8) than as a starter (4) for the national team.
– Turkey have suffered defeat in each of their last three games at the Euros, their worst run in the competition since losing their first four games in the competition between 1996 and 2000.
– Turkey have had a player booked in each of their last 17 games at major tournaments, last avoiding a booking against Italy at Euro 2000.
– Against Spain, Turkey failed to have a shot on target in a major tournament game for the first time since Euro 1996 against Croatia.
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