Missão Final is in the past. The new UEFA Champions League season is just around the corner! The 2019/20 campaign was packed with unbelievable goals and unforgettable nights, and we are delighted that Europe’s most prestigious competition is coming to our hometown in 2020/21 as well.
RB Leipzig are in Group H with the following teams:
• Turkish champions Başakşehir
• 13-time English Premier League champions Manchester United
• French giants, Paris Saint-Germain.
On Tuesday night at approximately 9pm in Leipzig, the perhaps most well-known and, for many, the most beautiful football anthem in the world will ring out once again as Başakşehir come to the Red Bull Arena for the opening matchday of Group H. Our opponent analysis takes a closer look at Turkey’s top team.
The first group stage game sees the defending Turkish champions take on Leipzig at the Red Bull Arena. This season, the Istanbul side have lost three of their opening four games 2-0, drawing the other 0-0. A rather disappointing start to their title defence, especially considering the boys in blue and orange have enjoyed a place among the top four at the end of every season since 2014.
Nevertheless, head coach Okan Buruk’s side have tremendous quality in their ranks, which they proved in the most recent Süper Lig Matchday. Up against last season’s Turkish cup winners and fellow top club Trabzonspor, Alexander Sørloth’s former employers, Başakşehir dominated and picked up their first three points of the season with a 2-0 win. They now sit at 19th (from 21 teams).
Alongside several young talents, Başakşehir’s squad has lots of experience to boast about, in players such as Edin Visca, who has played over 350 games for the club.
Club captain Mahmut Tekdemir has also been playing for the current Turkish champions for over a decade. The midfield man, dangerous with his head, has build-up expertise and outstanding defensive qualities. Last season, he scored the 1-0 winner against Kayserispor, which won his team the title.
Get kitted out for the Champions League!
17-year-old Ravil Tagir has only been with the club since October 1, but has already proven himself as an exceptional talent. The ball-playing centre-back, who moved to Başakşehir from Altinordu, was a first team regular in the second division and part of Turkey’s U21s at just 16 years of age.
- 2007: Promotion to the Süper Lig
- 2014: Promotion to the Süper Lig
- 2020: Turkish Champions
- 2020: Champions League qualification
Head coach Okan Buruk has been in charge of the Istanbul side since June last year and led the club to domestic glory in his first season. This was his second great coaching achievement, after winning the cup with Akhisarspor in the 2017/18 season.
Until 2010, the now 46-year-old was a Süper Lig player himself, contesting most of his games for city rivals, Galatasaray.
- Club name:
İstanbul Başakşehir Futbol Kulübü
15th August 1990
- Club colours:
Blue and orange
- Record player:
Current captain, Mahmut Tekdemir (391 appearances)
- Record goalscorer:
Edin Visca (100 goals in 351games)