Despite three deficits: Turkey prevents embarrassment against Luxembourg

On the fifth day of the Nations League, Turkey hosted Luxembourg at the Fatih Terim Stadium. A decisive match for coach Stefan Kuntz’s team, as they were just one point short of promotion to Liga B. Against the underdog, the favorite narrowly escaped embarrassment.

Gerson Rodrigues scored Luxembourg’s third goal.
IMAGO/Seskim Photo

Stefan Kuntz set up his team in a 4-4-2 system, with Cengiz Ünder pulling the strings in midfield. Luxembourg played more compactly with a 4-5-1. The Turks had more possession from the start and also had the first chance of the game through Enes Ünal. The FC Getafe striker was served well in the penalty area, but the goal did not surprise goalkeeper Moris (2′).

A little later, an actually harmless situation resulted in Turkey falling behind: Martins coolly exploited a communication problem between Turkish goalkeeper Cakir and defender Elmali to take the lead (8th place).

The goal gave Luxemburg confidence – but the joy was short-lived. Chanot defeated the opponent Aktürkoglu in the penalty area and Cengiz Ünder converted the penalty (16′). Supported by their crowd, the Turks created one scoring opportunity after another. But the Turkish attackers failed either at the Luxembourg goalkeeper Moris, as Ünal (18th), or shots from Dervisoglu (23th), Kökcü (26th) lacked the last precision.

Poor Turkish defense

Turkey was then punished coldly for the usury of chances. Borges Sanches won the ball from Ayhan and served Sinani perfectly, who scored to take the lead again (37′). But this time the lead didn’t last very long either. Chanot, who took the penalty to make it 1-1, scored an own goal after an actually harmless cross from Cengiz Ünder (39′).

The second half began as the first had ended. The Turks had more possession but were unable to put the Luxembourg defense under pressure. Luxembourg, on the other hand, continued to prick their opponents – and they continued to do it effectively: Gerson Rodrigues converted an assist from Bohnert to make it 3:2 (69th). Shortly before, Gerson had just cleared the line against Elmali (61′).

goals and maps

0:1martins (8.’)

1:1Cengiz Under (16′)





referee team

game info

Stadium Basaksehir Fatih Terim

But even the third lead shouldn’t be enough to win in the end. Yüksek, who had just come on as a substitute, put a shot into the net from 25 meters to make it 3-3 (87′). Yüksek missed almost two minutes later (89′). Turkey narrowly escaped embarrassment, but can still rejoice in the end: With this result, Turkey has moved up to League B in the Nations League. On Sunday (20.45), the Kuntz team visits the Faroe Islands. Luxembourg receives Lithuania at the same time.

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