The Roar
The Roar


More chaos in Turkey as owner pulls team off pitch a week in protest after referee attack

(Photo by Kadir Kemal Behar/Anadolu via Getty Images)
19th December, 2023

Turkish side Istanbulspor have walked off the pitch in protest at a refereeing decision in their Super Lig game against Trabzonspor.

Trabzonspor scored to go 2-1 up through Paul Onuachu on Tuesday (Wednesday AEDT), after Istanbulspor felt they should have been awarded a penalty following a clash between Florian Loshaj and Batista Mendy that left the former rolling on the floor.

Istanbulspor’s chairman Ecmel Faik Sarıalioglu instructed the team to leave the pitch and the game stopped in the 74th minute.

Some Istanbulspor players appeared to be reluctant to do so. The game was then abandoned.

“It is a sad day for football … We will wait for the football federation’s decision from now on,” Trabzonspor coach Abdullah Avci said.

The incident came on the first day of the resumption of matches following a week-long suspension after the president of top-flight club Ankaragucu, Faruk Koca, last week went on to the pitch and punched the referee.


The Turkish Football Federation (TFF) imposed a permanent ban on Koca, who was arrested the day after the match.

The TFF board also ruled that Ankaragucu should pay a two-million-lira ($A102,000) fine and would play five home games without fans as a result of the unrest involving fans and club officials.