Ersan Gulum turns his back on the Socceroos

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    Australia coach Holger Osieck says he feels “sorry” promising defender Ersan Gulum has turned his back on the Socceroos to commit his future to Turkey.

    The Australian-born 23-year-old has been the subject of a recent tug-of-war between countries but his omission from the Socceroos’ 23-man Asian Cup squad on Tuesday ended hopes he could end up sporting the green and gold.

    The Besiktas defender was called up by Turkey coach Guus Hiddink for last month’s friendly against the Netherlands but the fact he did not play meant he was still eligible to represent Australia.

    Osieck revealed on Tuesday he thought he had convinced Gulum to commit to Australia after a face-to-face meeting last month but said the player later changed his mind on the advice of his father.

    “I thought it was a done deal so I included him in the (extended squad) of 50 and then unfortunately things have turned around,” Osieck said.

    “In particular his father played a role and he said that he should opt for Turkey because he plays in Turkey and he gets his living there and they feel a lot of pressure from Turkish media and supporters.”

    Osieck said he respected Gulum’s decision but said the circumstances were “very, very unfortunate”.

    “It’s personal decision and you have to respect it however for my personal point of view after seeing him play I thought he would be a good player down the road for Australia,” Osieck said.

    “He’s got some good ingredients… and he’s still young he could play for another seven, eight years so from that point of view I feel really sorry that it didn’t happen but basically it’s his decision.”

    Gulum’s omission leaves Australia’s left back stocks looking decidedly thin following the retirement of Scott Chipperfield, with David Carney the only recognised left back in the Asian Cup squad.

    © AAP 2018

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    The Crowd Says (5)

    • December 29th 2010 @ 8:45am
      Paolo Simmons said | December 29th 2010 @ 8:45am | ! Report

      This case is very complicated. On one hand I say we paid fro his training with our taxes so if he doesn’t want to play for us Gulum and his pop can bugger off to Turkey and we never want to hear from them. On another hand I hear that we rejected him and now he’s lived elsewhere and wants to play for a bigger football nation, so good on him. In the end it’s his call and he can live with it. We should move on.

    • December 29th 2010 @ 12:18pm
      Mahony said | December 29th 2010 @ 12:18pm | ! Report

      Yep – we win some we loose some. This is the nature of the world game. Much greater football powers than us struggle to keep players with multiple passports. Where we differ is in the national (read government) nature of our AIS and the investment it makes in people.

    • Roar Guru

      December 29th 2010 @ 10:01pm
      Moonface said | December 29th 2010 @ 10:01pm | ! Report

      Hasn’t played for Turkey yet – might end up like Ogenovski.

    • January 18th 2011 @ 3:04pm
      Hellenicoz said | January 18th 2011 @ 3:04pm | ! Report

      Very unfortunate for Australia. Holger Osiek was going to pick him in the Socceroos 23 man squad for the Qatar 2011 AFC Asian Cup Tournament after travelling to Ankara to watch him play against Genclerbirligi and had a long chat with him the night before the match in which Holger Osiek said “He seemed to be committed to play for Australia”. Gulum had told Osieck he was keen to earn his first international cap as a Socceroo.
      He thought that was a done deal so he included him in the list of 50. Unfortunately things changed after his father Ihsan had put pressure on the player not to forfeit his chance of playing for Turkey. “He said Ersan should opt for Turkey because he plays in Turkey and makes his living there and they both feel a lot of pressure from the Turkish media and the Besiktas supporters.”
      I hope Ersan Gulum realizes as a “Turkish-Australian” not just Turkish or just Australian, he would be more at home in the Socceroos squad. He would be one of the boys. Croatian-Australians, Italian-Australians, Greek-Australians, Serb-Australians & other boys of many different ethnic backgrounds make up the Socceroos squad & he could realate to them more than the players in the Turkish national team.
      Turkey will give him his 1st senior international cap in the friendly agaianst Korea Republic in February & unless he changes his mind, it will be Turkey for ever. I hope they dont just cap him & never use him hardly at all again.
      I hope to see him in the Green & Gold Socceroos jersey in the March 29 friendly against Germany & at the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil together with Matthew Spiranovic as our main defenders.
      You never know.

    • February 8th 2011 @ 11:01pm
      Hellenicoz said | February 8th 2011 @ 11:01pm | ! Report

      Ersan Gulum is back in Australia for a knee operation & will probably miss the rest of the season after getting injured in Turkish Cup match on January 26, 2011. What does this meen in regards to his career at Besiktas & his international career? Had Guus Hiddink not picked him in Turkey’s 24 man squad against the Netherlands in November 2010 he would of been playing for Australia against Uzbekistan in the Asian Cup semi final & not in Besiktas Turkish Cup match. Ersan Gulum will hopefully pick Australia & be at the Brazil 2014 FIFA World Cup & not just a occational squad member with Turkey.

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