Fenerbahce’s Victor Moses: ‘The atmosphere here in Turkey is amazing’

first_imgFenerbahce are in a state of transition under the new director of football, Damien Comolli – who counts Arsenal, Tottenham and Liverpool on his CV – who is trying to create a younger squad. Moses is still only 28, something many forget considering he made his professional debut aged 16 in 2007. Now he is aiming to be a senior player, proven by him taking the responsibility from the penalty spot, scoring Monday’s winner at Erzurumspor.Despite other offers from around the world, Moses desired a more authentic experience in one of the world’s most fascinating football cultures. “It obviously wasn’t the easiest option to take. I wanted to come here because I just wanted to play football,” Moses explains. “I want to make sure the club is in a better position than when I arrived and that is a huge test of myself as a player, to take them to where they want to be.”Home comforts have aided the adjustment to a new home and lifestyle, as moving abroad mid-season can be a tricky prospect, but Moses himself thinks little has changed. “I am here with my wife and two kids. My kids are going to school here and my wife has settled down. It has made it a lot easier for me to go to work and come home to see the kids, it feels like I am still back in London.” Victor Moses has helped transform the fortunes of Fenerbahce who were in danger of relegation when he joined on loan from Chelsea in January. Photograph: Anadolu Agency/Getty Images European club football Fenerbahçe Football Reuse this content The Africa Cup of Nations takes place this summer but Moses will not be representing Nigeria, having retired after last year’s World Cup to concentrate on club football. He has already won the biggest prize in Africa and regularly visits the country of his birth, so knows what it would mean if his compatriots can repeat the feat of 2013. “It’s a massive thing to win the African Nations, it will go down in history. It was my first tournament with Nigeria and winning it was a bonus for me, it was a good experience for me.”Rather than a summer of football, it will be one of rest for Moses cheering on his former international teammates, giving him time to reflect on what has brought the biggest change of his professional career. interviews Share on Pinterest Share via Email Share on Facebook Pinterest Twitter Share on LinkedIncenter_img Chelsea Read more “It’s tough, as Chelsea’s a very special place for me and I’ve always had a great relationship with the fans but it became very obvious that I was not in the manager’s plans,” Moses says when we meet in Istanbul. “I have achieved great things there but I just needed to play football and that’s why I got the move to Fenerbahce.”There were offers on the table from numerous clubs, including in China, but the romance of Fenerbahce was an enticing prospect for a player who had previously spent his entire career in England. The 19-times Turkish champions had won three matches out of 18 in the league before Moses arrived on loan for 18 months, leaving them outside the relegation zone only on goal difference.Since landing in Istanbul Moses has played in 13 league games and lost just once, helping Fenerbahce up to eighth and with a fighting chance of Europa League qualification. “When I came here, everyone was a little bit shocked by the position they were in and that was the main reason why I came, as a big club like Fenerbahce should not be in a position like that.”The stands at Premier League grounds can be a sedate environment, so the constant bouncing of the fans in Turkey has taken a little getting used to. “In the stadium the atmosphere is a lot different [to England], it’s unlike anything I have ever experienced in football, every game is a must-win game and they are so passionate as they just want us to win and make everybody happy. It’s not just football, it’s a way of life here.”Few things in football can compare to Istanbul derbies and Moses can now say he has featured in two. Six goals were shared away at Besiktas, while a 10-man Fenerbahce came back to draw against eventual champions Galatasaray, games that will live on in his memory.“It’s a massive experience, playing against Galatasaray and Besiktas, you can feel the atmosphere, it feels like the stadium is going to fall down due to the fans singing and bouncing. The atmosphere is amazing, you can easily tell the passion they’ve got for football here is crazy. They just love football and want the team to win, that’s why they support the team.” Share on Twitter Topics Read more Facebook Share on WhatsApp Moving abroad was not always part of the plan for Victor Moses but after being left out in the cold by Maurizio Sarri at Chelsea, the forward is enjoying the heat of the action at Fenerbahce. By his own admission he could have taken easier options when deciding where to move in January but the challenge of bringing one of Turkey’s bigger clubs out of a relegation battle was appealing.Sarri’s summer arrival at Chelsea brought a change in system, with Moses being a victim of the adjustments. The Nigerian enjoyed a Stamford Bridge renaissance under Antonio Conte after a stuttering spell in west London in which he went out on loan three times before becoming a key component of the title-winning squad of 2016-17. However, he managed only five appearances under Sarri, forcing him to look elsewhere. Christian Pulisic: ‘There’s a champion mentality at Chelsea’ Share on Messenger If my Chelsea future hinges on winning final, sack me now, says Maurizio Sarrilast_img

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *