From Ergin Ataman on Stefan Kuntz allegations: I’m baffled

Flash statements from Anadolu Efes Head Coach Ergin Ataman… Experienced coach, regarding the allegations that German coach Stefan Kuntz will take over the National Team, said: “He is a coach who has not been successful at the 1st league level at the club level, in the European cups. I am in a state of amazement. “The world of football is a strange world. I’m glad I became a basketball coach,” he said. Ataman admitted that he talked to President Unal Aysal about whether he could be the coach of the football team while he was working at Galatasaray.

Anadolu Efes Men’s Basketball Team Head Coach Ergin Ataman criticized the name of Stefan Kuntz, who coached the Germany Under-21 National Team, as the head of the A National Football Team. Ataman answered the questions of the members of the press on the media day organized by the dark blue-white club before the 2021-2022 season. The meeting was held online via video conferencing within the scope of the new type of coronavirus (Kovid-19) epidemic measures. Experienced head coach said that he read Stefan Kuntz’s name in the press for the National Team Coaching position vacated by Şenol Güneş. Noting that Kuntz, who also played football in Beşiktaş for a while, did not prove himself at the club or A National Team level, Ataman said, “Senol Güneş left our football national team. There is talk of who will become a coach. I was very surprised while surfing the internet yesterday. There are so many valuable football teachers in Turkey. The name of Stefan Kuntz, who has been coaching the German Hope National Team for 5 years, is mentioned. It is written that he will head the Turkish National Football Team. I am in awe. The football world is a strange world, it has a strange management. I am glad that I became a basketball teacher. I am glad that I achieved this career in basketball.” he said.

Expressing that he is not against a foreign coach, Ergin Ataman continued his words as follows: “Our football coaches also do not speak out about this. Frankly, I am surprised. I am never against foreign coaches. There are 20-30 coaches in Europe such as Löw, Guardiola and Mourinho. I am a person who loves a lot and believes in their power. I am a person who believes that Turkish people can achieve a lot. The Turkish National Team has also caught the best generation in history. There was a mismatch and unfortunateness with Şenol, but this team has a lot of careers, all games respect him and his successes. I am in favor of bringing a coach over all the players that he will hear from. I expect a voice from football teachers and the football public.”

The head coach of the navy-blue-white team mentioned that there are many Turkish coaches who have the capacity to run the crescent-star team, and said, “We have at least 5-6 valuable teachers at the level to coach the national team in Turkey. All of these coaches’ careers are way ahead of the current coach. I think every Turkish coach would be proud to work in the Turkish National Team. I think that a Turkish coach should be at the head of the Turkish National Team. However, there can also be a foreign coach who has proven himself at the level of national teams or clubs. As in the example of Giovanni Guidetti… However, for a hope national team coach to come and head the Turkish National Football Team, in my opinion, it is an insult to Turkish football.” used the phrases.

“Ünal Aysal asked if I could coach the football team”

Ergin Ataman said that former Galatasaray Club President Ünal Aysal asked him if he could coach the football team 6-7 years ago. Ataman, “Have you ever received an offer to coach the football team?” Upon the question, “After being among the best and elite coaches of Europe in basketball, I can’t think of running a football team. This has always been talked about. A basketball coach can become a football coach if I study for 1-2 years. Galatasaray 6-7 years ago. While I was coaching the Basketball Team, our president Ünal Aysal asked if I could also coach the Galatasaray Football Team. It was not an official offer, but an interview passed. But at that time, I said that I could do this after 1-2 years of training. He left the presidency after 1-2 months. Good thing we didn’t go that route because we could be crawling in the 3rd Division right now.” expressed an opinion.

The goal is the second consecutive THY Europa League championship

Having won the THY Europa League championship the past season, Ataman said that they will chase the second championship in a row with his team. The experienced head coach said that he was happy at Anadolu Efes and that he did not receive any offers from another club, “I extended my contract with Anadolu Efes during the season. I am very happy here. Anadolu Efes is the most organized and corporate basketball club in Europe right now. It’s a nice family here.” We created an environment. I didn’t want to disrupt this synergy. All clubs would be interested in a coach who is the champion of the Europa League, but we cut this off by signing a contract. I did not have any transfer negotiations.” he said.

“Last season we won the biggest trophy in Europe.” Ataman continued his words as follows: “As a coach, I also won the biggest trophy missing in my trophy collection in my career. The goals in sports do not end. A new challenge begins. We have a good and champion team. We will try to repeat this. We will try to repeat this. “There are 2 teams (Olympiakos and Maccabi Tel-Aviv) who have won the championship in a row. We will try to repeat this. We see ourselves as the champion of the season that could not be completed due to the pandemic. Our challenge this season will be to capture the most sustainable success graph in the history of the THY Europa League.”

“Don’t let them bet on our championship”

Ergin Ataman said that 6-7 teams have a chance to win the THY Europa League in the new season. When it was stated that the betting companies consider Anadolu Efes the favourite, Ataman said: “Don’t be fooled by the odds offered by the betting companies. I’m not a fan of betting on sports. Please don’t let anyone put serious numbers on our championship. We had a very good season last season. We kept in shape at the most important moment. We became champions by playing the play-offs and the Final Four as a full squad. I think the balance of power is the same in the THY Europa League this season. We see that the top 8 teams are one step ahead of the season. “We will try to show the basketball that we have been playing for 3 years. I hope we will not have any problems. I see Anadolu Efes among the biggest candidates for the championship, but I think that at least 6-7 teams have an equal chance of winning the championship.”

Ergin Ataman, expressing his thoughts on Aleksandar Djordjevic, the new head coach of Fenerbahçe Beko, with whom they will compete in both the THY Europa League and the ING Basketball Super League, said, “He is a very valuable coach. I am sure that he will add a lot to Turkish basketball and Fenerbahçe. It is very nice to be in competition with quality foreign coaches. I have experienced this with Obradovic for years. I lived with Igor Kokoskov last season. In the past, career foreign coaches such as David Blatt, Dusan Ivkovic, Velimir Perasovic worked in Turkey. Djordjevic is one of them. I wish him success. ” he said.

“It’s very difficult to run a team in the NBA”

Ataman emphasized that he wanted to be the first European to go to the American Basketball League (NBA) as a head coach. “It is very difficult to run a team in the NBA. No European head coach who has been successful in Europe so far has been able to go to the NBA as a head coach.” Ergin Ataman made the following statement: “The NBA has a more closed attitude towards European coaches. It’s not like that about the players. It seems very difficult, but I have always challenged difficult subjects. He always sings about the NBA.’ When I said that we would be champions in the THY Europa League two seasons ago, few people believed it. And they didn’t believe me when I said ‘We will be European champions.’ People there had a smile when I said that. I managed to say these things. Now I want to create a perception by saying. I am not in a position to be selective at the moment. If an offer comes in the future, rather than being selective, I can be the first European head coach in the NBA and be successful with weaker teams. I want to prove it.”


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