Fenerbahce’s Turkish Super Lig title celebrations were put on hold after bitter rivals Besiktas held them to a 1-1 draw on Sunday.
A fiercely-contested Istanbul derby was somewhat overshadowed by matters off the field.
The build-up from Besiktas’ perspective was marred by the club’s most famous supporters’ group, Carsi, boycotting the fixture in protest against the league’s new e-ticketing system, while Fenerbahce went into the game with club chairman Aziz Yildirim facing a possible return to prison after his appeal against a conviction for match-fixing was rejected.
In the match itself, Moussa Sow put visitors Fenerbahce into the lead with a disguised finish in the 24th minute, but Ramon equalised just before the break, drilling into the bottom-right corner after Atiba Hutchinson had hit the post from long range.
Both Ramon and Ismail Koybasi were sent off for second bookable offences in the second half, but nine-man Besiktas held on to stay 12 points behind Fener, who need just one point from their remaining four games to guarantee a 19th league title.
Galatasaray’s title challenge officially ended in humiliating fashion as they lost 4-0 at home to UEFA Europa League hopefuls Kasimpasa.
Hakan Balta’s early red card allowed the visitors an early chance to take the lead from the penalty spot, which Ezequiel Carione gratefully accepted.
There was no coming back for the hosts, who are now 14 points behind Fener.
Trabzonspor remain in pole position for Turkey’s fourth European spot after thrashing struggling Kayseri Erciyesspor 5-0, while Sivasspor also have 46 points after beating Antalyaspor 2-1.
Kayserispor were unable to lift themselves off the bottom of the table despite coming from 2-0 down to draw 2-2 at Akhisar Belediyespor.
Elazigspor sit perilously close to the drop zone on 31 points following a 1-0 loss at Bursaspor.
Gaziantepspor and Konyaspor also remain in trouble after losing 1-0 and 3-1 to Genclerbirligi and Rizespor respectively, while Karabukspor could still secure a top-four finish after drawing 0-0 with Eskisehirspor.
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