His followers called him “Emperor”: for Two decades, Aziz Yildirim ruled the football club Fenerbahce Istanbul, longer than any President before him. He came out of Fan revolts, and a one-year prison sentence for match-fixing.
In June he was overthrown in a democratic way, through an election among the members of the Association. The man who succeeded him, was born of the Istanbul-based money noble: Ali Koc is a co-owner of Koc Holding, the largest group in the country.
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The billionaire now faces a difficult task. Fenerbahce is not just any club: The club is next to Besiktas and Galatasaray to the “Big Three” of Turkish football. He is over a hundred years old, was the winner 19 Times Turkish champion, six-Time Cup.
In Turkey, where football has always been more than just a game, suggested many people turn to the change of leadership in “Fener” as a harbinger of a time: Yildirim, a Confidant of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. The Koc family, secular, elitist, is gone, however, always careful to distance to the government. Rahmi Koc, the father of Ali, asked already in 2001, publicly, as Erdogan was to get his assets. While the government-critical protests in Istanbul’s Gezi Park in 2013, a Hotel that belongs to the Koc group is granted refuge, to protesters.
appearance of a Hollywood star, studying in Harvard
Ali Koc, 51 years old, looks like a Hollywood actor. He studied at the University of Harvard and drew Koc Holding as Vice-Chairman of the Supervisory Board. Under Yildirim, he was a Vice-President at Fenerbahce in the Junior Department. If Koc has managed to hunt Yildirim from the office, then, as members of the opposition, hoped Turkey could also get rid of Erdogan.
In the presidential elections on may 24. June triumphed but then again Erdogan. And also Ali Koc has now lost some of its Shine. He carries the legacy which was left to Yildirim, Fenerbahce is hopelessly in debt, Koc has calculated that the residues of more than 600 million euros. Due to the financial crisis in Turkey, the debt burden grows. In the League it is also bad for the tradition club: Fenerbahce at the Moment is the descent closer to it than the title, it is also a change of coach has changed nothing.
Ali Koc says that he will need for the renovation of Fenerbahce time. It sounds now almost like a Turkish opposition politician who has to explain to another defeat.