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Testing times for Terim

Published: Tuesday 2 December 2003, 8.07CET
Galatasaray SK coach Fatih Terim has several problems ahead of the rearranged game against Juventus FC.
Published: Tuesday 2 December 2003, 8.07CET

Testing times for Terim

Galatasaray SK coach Fatih Terim has several problems ahead of the rearranged game against Juventus FC.

By Mark Bennett

Galatasaray SK coach Fatih Terim has a number of concerns ahead of his side's rearranged UEFA Champions League game with Juventus FC in Dortmund on Tuesday.

All to play for
The Turkish team are bottom of Group D with three points from four matches but a win against Juve, who have already qualified for the knockout stages, will leave Terim's men two points behind second-placed Real Sociedad de Fútbol ahead of their meeting in Spain on Matchday 6.

'Lost advantage'
Terim acknowledged the game was crucial, but believes the odds are stacked against his side, who he feels have been penalised after the match was switched from its scheduled date and venue in Istanbul last week following bomb attacks in the Turkish city. "It is impossible not to be angry because we lost the field and the spectator advantage," Terim said.

Striking problem
The unfamiliar setting of BV Borussia Dortmund's Westfalenstadion is not Terim's only worry. "Going into the match we know that only a win will keep our hopes alive and that is what we will be looking for," said the Galatasaray coach. "The only problem is, I haven't really got any strikers available. The only fully-fit attacker is Arif Erdem, and Hakan Sükür will face a late fitness test."

Depth of squad
When asked about his opponents' injury problems, Terim simply replied: "Don't you tell me about their injury problems! We have worse problems than them. However, their biggest advantage is that they have more depth in their squad. If someone gets injured they can bring on a player who is just as good."

'Large Turkish community'
Frank de Boer knows Galatasaray cannot afford any distractions. "We must concentrate on the game in hand if we want to have a chance of reaching the next round," said the Dutch defender. "I am sure the crowd will get behind us because of the large Turkish community in Germany. I am expecting at least 40,000 fans to turn the match into a home game for us."

'Right decision'
Marcello Lippi echoed De Boer's desire to concentrate on the match. "We have got an important game to play here and that is all I am concerned about," said the Juventus coach. "We didn't ask for the match to be moved, but I think it is the right decision."

Juve changes
With Juventus having sealed their place in the last 16 on Matchday 4, Lippi will take the opportunity to rest a number of his high-profile stars, but stressed that he wants to get a result. "I will definitely make some changes to the lineup," he confirmed. "David Trezeguet, Pavel Nedved and Gianluigi Buffon will all be rested, but that doesn't mean we will throw the match. We need one more point to secure first place in the group and I am aiming to get that here."

'Easier opponents'
Veteran midfield player Antonio Conte agreed that winning the section was potentially crucial, saying: "We want to finish first because it will give us the chance of a slightly easier opponent in the next round. But there are no easy games in the Champions League. I am sure we will all witness that tomorrow. Galatasaray have a good side, but we will all be motivated to do our job."

Last updated: 03/04/04 18.27CET

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