Turkish Super Lig hit another controversial ref palaver on Tuesday after Istanbulspor president Faik Sarialioglu called his team off pitch in protest for not getting a penalty.
Sarialioglu walked down to the pitch to call his players off the pitch against Trabznospor. The hosts were denied a penalty by the referee before Trabzonspor went 2-1 up. Recall that the Turkish Super Lig was suspended last week after a chairman punched a referee on the face
Istanbulspor were drawing 1-1 when Florian Loshaj went down under Batista Mendy’s challenge but no penalty was awarded.
Trabzonspor then scored to put them 2-1 up at the other end through former Southampton striker Paul Onuachu before the Istanbulspor players were called off the pitch in the 73rd minute by their own president. The match is currently suspended.
In astonishing scenes, Istanbulspor striker Simon Deli, who is on loan from Adana Demirspor, was seen on his knees – appearing to beg his own president not to take the team off.
“It is a sad day for football. We will wait for the football federation’s decision from now on,” Trabzonspor coach Abdullah Avci said.
After the game was halted, Trabzonspor posted on X, formerly known as Twitter: “We would like to thank our fans who did not leave our team alone in Istanbulspor’s away game.”
Instanbulspor are at the bottom of the Turkish Super Lig after picking up just eight points in 15 games. They have won just once in their last eight matches.
Turkey’s top flight returned on Tuesday night for the first time since it was suspended after Ankaragucu president Faruk Koca punched referee Halil Umut Meler in the face after a Super Lig match on December 12.
Koca has been handed a permanent ban by the Turkish Football Federation (TFF) after being arrested for the incident.