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The Turks Roasted

Robbie Ashcroft (aka Mottman) relives the path to European cup glory in 1977. This article was previously published on the forum of redandwhitekop

JOEY ATE THE FROGS LEGS - MADE THE SWISS ROLL - NOW HE'S MUNCHIN' GLADBACHS.

THE EUROPEAN CUP 1977

Date 20th October 1976 – European Cup 3rd Round first leg held at Hüseyin Avni Aker stadium Trabzonspor 1 [Cemil pen 65] V Liverpool 0 – Attendance 13,000

Trabzonspor
1. Senol
2. Turgay
3. Necati
4. Kadir
5. Cemil
6. Bekir
7. Allyavus [Elgen]
8. Huseyin
9. Alikemal
10. Necmi
11. Ahmet

Liverpool
1. Ray Clemence
2. Tommy Smith
3. Joey Jones
4. Phil Thompson
5. Ray Kennedy
6. Emlyn Hughes
7. Kevin Keegan
8. Terry McDermott
9. Steve Heighway ( Fairclough )
10. John Toshack ( Johnson )
11. Ian Callaghan

subs not used: Peter McDonnell – Brian Kettle – Jimmy Case

A trip to Turkey broke new ground for the Reds. This was of course was the first time we’d been drawn against Turkish Champions Trabzonspor, though unknowns outside of their own country, they were bound to ask a number of unique questions from the Boy’s from the Mersey.  Owing to the political situation that was prevalent in Turkey at that time. Liverpool FC decided [on the Governments advice] not to take up an allocation of tickets for the trip to the Bosphorous.

Liverpool supporters were gutted to hear this news! We wanted to follow the Reds every step of the way on our journey in the European Cup. Despite many many call’s to the Club and various travel agencies we couldn’t arrange a trip to Turkey to support our fellow Reds. Rumour has it that just one Liverpool fan managed to make it over there due to the severe travel restrictions of the time.  Trabzonspor of Turkey were known to be a pretty decent team and with that sort of fanatical [politically motivated] crowd behind them this would indeed be a tough test for the Reds.  As in time served fashion, the Reds quickly tried to settle the game down and indeed the home crowd. In a close even affair the game ended with a 1.0 win to the Turks with Ali Kamel scoring courtesy of a ridiculous penalty decision. A partisan home crowd roared them onto victory on a bumpy pitch and a ball that had a mind of its own. [The issue with the ball was questioned after the match, it was suggested that it didn’t comply with the UEFA regulations] reports from that time suggest it had a Duck egg the size of "Franny Lee’s gut" but the faceless officials wouldn’t make a decision.

Bob Paisley was livid about the hotel allocated to Liverpool before their European Cup tie with Trabzonspor. "It is like a doss house," he said. He then warned that Liverpool were going to give them a good hiding, Paisley is left with egg on his face as the Turkish side win 1-0. Cemil scored from the spot after Emlyn Hughes conceded a penalty.  This game wasn’t shown live on any of the TV channels, thankfully Radio City had sent someone over to provide match commentary [via telephone.] Phil Neal didn’t play that night, a dead leg forced him out of this game he then embarked on an incredible run of 417 consecutive appearances for the Reds. Ian Callaghan set a new record of European appearances that night with 79 games. All in all a 1.0 defeat wasn’t such a bad result afterall, it was certainly game on at Anfield in a few weeks time.

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Date 3rd November 1976 – European Cup 3rd Round second leg held at Anfield 
Liverpool 3 [Heighway 8 – Johnson 10 – Keegan 19] V Trabzonspor 0 – Attendance 42,275

Liverpool
1. Ray Clemence
2. Phil Neal
3. Joey Jones
4. Phil Thompson
5. Ray Kennedy
6. Emlyn Hughes
7. Kevin Keegan
8. Terry McDermott
9. Steve Heighway
10.Dave Johnson
11.Ian Callaghan

Subs not used: Peter McDonnell – John Toshack – Jimmy Case – Brian Kettle – Dave Fairclough  

Trabzonspor
1. Senol
2.Turgay
3. Necati
4. Necmi
5. Cemil
6. Elgin
7. Allyavus
8. Bekir
9. Alikemal
10. Hesseyin [Milemic Cemil]
11. Ahmet

Trabzonspor may have been new to the Soccer scene in Turkey [established in 1967] but they had eight players in their squad who had been members of the Turkish National squad. The Turks had gained a reputation of not conceding many goals away from home and hoped to leave Anfield with a draw.  Our result should emphasize just how dominant Liverpool really where that night.  The Turks lined up with a defensive line up which they would rue with much regret. The eagerly anticipated second leg against Trabzonspor didn't turn out to be as difficult as first expected with the Reds running out comfortable 3.0 winners with strikes by Heighway, Johnson and Keegan in the first half.  

Large sections of the Main Stand contained hundreds of British based Trabzonspor supporters the noisy atmosphere they created helped stimulate the Liverpool crowd into a cresendo of noise. We where very disappointed that they had been allowed to bring so many supporters when we weren’t allowed to take any. The second half was something of a non-affair as the three first half goals had destroyed any confidence the Turk’s may have had.

Copyright - Robbie Ashcroft

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