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Sacking Vitor Pereira Makes No Sense for Fenerbahce

Vitor Pereira (L) served as an assistant to Villas-Boas at Porto.
Vitor Pereira (L) served as an assistant to Villas-Boas at Porto.
Amritangshu Bandyopadhyay

Turkish football is no stranger to making decisions out of the blue. A similar incident happened earlier this week when Fenerbahce decided to part ways with head coach Vitor Pereira. This was following their 2-2 draw against defending champions Besiktas.

Official: Fenerbahce have fired coach Vítor Pereira with the club 5th in the table and 14 points off the top spot https://t.co/lZx18aszOK

Fenerbahce's performance in last year's Liga Turkey

Fenerbahce has seen eight managerial changes in the last seven years before the firing of Pereira this week.

Despite bidding as one of the favorites to win the title, Fenebahce's last win in the division came way back in the 2013/14 season under the captaincy of Raul Meireles.

The last few seasons have been near-misses for them, with the other Istanbul outfits conquering the league. Last season was one such tale.

Under Emer Belozoglu, Fenerbahce were off to a flier leading the division at the halfway mark. A combination of loss in form in the second half coupled with Galatasaray and Besiktas' strong surge forced them to finish third with 82 points, just two off the champions, Besiktas.


Who is Vitor Pereira?

Vitor Pereira is a former Portuguese league winning coach. He was the assistant of Andre Villas-Boas when Porto completed the historic treble in the 2010/11 season. Following Villas-Boas' departure to Chelsea, he helped them win both the Portuguese league and cup titles.

Following that, he moved to Greece where he won the league with Olympiacos before following Villas-Boas' route to Shanghai SIPG. SIPG, under Villas-Boas, finished second the year before behind Evergrande and lost the cup final and the Asian Champions League semi-final as well.

In his first season in charge, he managed to break the Evergrande monopoly of the Chinese league, by pipping them to the title.

He stayed there until last season before making a move to Turkey.


His tenure with Fenerbahce and the sour end

His arrival at Fenerbahce brought optimism to the fan base given the club's recent drought in the league.

Despite a patchy start to the season with the club picking up just two points from five games, the club earned their first win against Hatayspor. They followed that up with better wins against other lower-division clubs.

In fact, they managed to beat Galatasaray in their inter-continental derby this season despite going down to ten men.

Galatasaray vs Fenerbahçe 1 - 2 http://bit.ly/gi2RNv

Following their elimination from the Europa League, the club bettered their domestic run.

On December 19th, Fenerbahce drew their second derby of the season against Besiktas only for the board to announce Pereira's dismissal on the next day.

This came as a huge surprise. Pereira's track-record in mid-tier European leagues is second to none. At the time of his sacking, the club stood fourth in the table, sixteen points behind the leaders.

But what is interesting is that this has been that sort of a season. Besiktas are now stuttering at seventh with Galatasaray further below at 12th. Parting with Pereira's services makes no sense whatsoever.


Edited by Rohit Mishra

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