Gençlerbirliği S.K.

(Redirected from Genclerbirligi)

Gençlerbirliği Spor Kulübü (pronounced Turkish pronunciation: [ɟentʃˈlæɾbiɾli.i]), commonly known as Gençlerbirliği, is a Turkish sports club based in Ankara. Formed in 1923, Gençlerbirliği are nicknamed Ankara Rüzgârı (The Wind of Ankara) or simply Gençler (The Youth). The club colours are black and red. The football team currently plays its home matches at Eryaman Stadium, following the closure of the Ankara 19 Mayıs.

Gençlerbirliği S.K. crest.svg
Full nameGençlerbirliği Spor Kulübü
Nickname(s)Gençler (The Youth)
Ankara Rüzgârı (The Wind of Ankara)
Alkaralar (The Red and Black)
Founded14 March 1923; 99 years ago (1923-03-14)
GroundEryaman Stadium
PresidentNiyazi Akdaş
Head coachMustafa Dalcı
LeagueTFF First League
2021–22TFF First League, 13th of 19
WebsiteClub website
Current season

Domestically, the club have won the Turkish Cup twice, in 1987 and 2001. They have also won the former Turkish Football Championship twice and the regional Ankara Football League a record nine times. In Europe, Gençlerbirliği's greatest success came in 2004. The club reached the fourth round of the UEFA Cup before losing to eventual champions Valencia.


Gençlerbirliği squad in 1924.

Gençlerbirliği were founded in a slightly different way compared to many other football clubs, having been established by students from a high school, Ankara Erkek Lisesi (Sultani Mektebi). The students in question (Ramiz Eren, Mennan İz, Mazhar Atacanlı, Sait, Kenan, Nuri, Namık Katoğlu, Namık Ambarcıoğlu, Rıdvan Kırmacı, Hafi Araç, Ruhi, Sarı Ziya and Hakkı) had failed to be selected for their own school team, and asked one of their student friends, Asim, to talk with his father about setting up a football team for them to show how well they could play.

On 14 March 1923, Asim's father, the member of parliament from Muş Province, established the team for his son and his friends. Since all the members of the team were students he chose the name 'Youth Union' (Turkish: Gençlerbirliği). They elected Sarı Ziya's father Faik Bey as their first chairman.[2]

Turkish newspaper Yeni Sabah announcing the Turkish championship title of Gençlerbirliği on 16 July 1941.

Subsequently, these young students wanted to play against the school team which had not selected them. Gençlerbirliği won the game, played at "Hamit tarlası", 3–0. According to these young rebellious players this victory forged the identity of their new team.

They won the regional Ankara Football League a record nine times between 1923 and 1959, when the league had first level status before the introduction of a nationwide league.[3] Their greatest success domestically were the victories in the former Turkish Football Championship, when they became Turkish champions in 1941 and 1946.[4] Gençler entered the Turkish National League in 1959 and played 12 seasons until relegation in the 1969–70 season. They played in the second level until relegation to third level in the 1978–79 season. The club came back to second level after the merger of the third level with second level, at the end of the 1979–80 season. They finished second from last in Group A of the Second League, and had to relegate to the regional league. But, since the number of teams in the second division was increased, Gençlerbirliği were readmitted. The club won Group D in the 1982–83 season and finally returned to the top-flight after 13 years. They relegated again in 1987–88 season. Finally, Gençlerbirliği returned to the top-flight in the 1988–89 season, in their first return attempt. Gençlerbirliği's most successful seasons in the Süper Lig are 1965–66 and 2002–03, when they reached the third place. At the end of the 2017–18 season Gençler only reached the 17th place and as a result the club relegated to the second tier TFF First League.


There are two rumors about how Gençlerbirliği got their team colors, black and red:

  • The young students went to a local haberdashers and the only available colors were black and red. They purchased these colors to sew their own kit. [1]
  • The outskirts of Ankara during spring time see plenty of poppy flowers (Gelincik) blooming and Gençlerbirliği selected the red and black of this flower for their colors. Gençlerbirliği merchandise in their store is usually called Gelincik by their supporters.


Gençlerbirliği's arch-rival are the neighbouring club Ankaragücü and games between the clubs are considered as the "Derby of the Capital".

Youth academy and scoutingEdit

Gençlerbirliği have always been one of the teams in Turkey most notable for their talented young footballers that they procure through scouting both in Turkey and throughout Europe and Africa. For example, Geremi was scouted and raised by the club, transferred to Real Madrid and later Chelsea. Another of Gençlerbirliği's young stars Isaac Promise received the 2005–06 Super League Individual Youth player of the Year award.[5]

Gençlerbirliği's state-of-the-art youth academy is located in Beştepe, Ankara with 50 acres (200,000 m2) of training facilities (Beştepe İlhan Cavcav Tesisleri).

Gençlerbirliği had been run by İlhan Cavcav from 1978 until his death in 2017. With Cavcav's help, Gençlerbirliği have become one of the more stable clubs in Turkey. This has been achieved mainly through the departure of the most talented players every season to the other clubs in Turkey. Departing players are usually replaced with much cheaper imports from Turkey, Europe or Africa.


Domestic competitionsEdit

Winners (2): 1941, 1946
Runners-up (1): 1950
Winners (2): 1986–87, 2000–01
Runners-up (3): 2002–03, 2003–04, 2007–08
Runners-up (1): 1987
Runners-up (1): 1946

Regional competitionsEdit

Winners (10) (record): 1929-30, 1930-31, 1931-32, 1932-33, 1934-35, 1939-40, 1940-41, 1945-46, 1949-50, 1950-51
Runners-up (7): 1926, 1926–27, 1929, 1934, 1936–37, 1942–43, 1947–48


Winners (13): 1960, 1961, 1969, 1979, 1985, 1986, 1989, 1993, 1994, 1998 (two winners), 2002, 2003

European participationsEdit

UEFA Cup Winners' CupEdit

Season Round Club Home Away Aggregate
1987–88 1R   Dinamo Minsk 1–2 0–2 1–4

UEFA Cup / UEFA Europa LeagueEdit

Season Round Club Home Away Aggregate
2001–02 1R   Halmstad 1–1 0–1 1–2
2003–04 1R   Blackburn Rovers 3–1 1–1 4–2
2R   Sporting CP 1–1 3–0 4–1
3R   Parma 3–0 1–0 4–0
4R   Valencia 1–0 0–2 (aet) 1–2
2004–05 Q2   Rijeka 1–0 1–2 2–2 (a)
1R   Egaleo 1–1 0–1 1–2

UEFA Intertoto CupEdit

Season Round Club Home Away Aggregate
1995 Group Stage   Hapoel Petah Tikva 4–0 3rd
  Strasbourg 1–4
  Floriana 3–0
  Tirol Innsbruck 2–3


Current squadEdit

As of 27 January 2023[6]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Pos. Nation Player
1 GK   TUR Nurullah Aslan (on loan from Samsunspor)
3 DF   TUR Musa Şahindere
4 DF   TUR Metehan Mert
5 DF   TUR Mert Kula
6 MF   GER Gökhan Gül
7 MF   TUR Arda Tuzcu
8 MF   MAR Moha Rharsalla
9 FW   TUR İlker Karakaş
10 MF   TUR Serdarcan Eralp
11 FW   TUR Gökhan Altıparmak
FW   MTN Souleymane Doukara
FW   TUR Muhammed Ertürk
17 FW   TUR Barış Alıcı
GK   TUR Ahmet Varol
20 DF   TUR Abdullah Şahindere
21 MF   UKR Oleksandr Byelyayev
24 DF   TUR Alperen Babacan
26 GK   TUR Ebrar Aydın
No. Pos. Nation Player
28 FW   TUR Baran Başyiğit
29 FW   TUR Kağan Özkan
30 MF   TUR Erkan Eyibil (on loan from Antalyaspor)
38 MF   TUR Hayrullah Erkip (on loan from Kayserispor)
41 GK   TUR Onur Alp Sarman
42 MF   POR Tiago Rodrigues
44 GK   TUR Übeyd Adıyaman
50 FW   ECU Jaime Ayoví
57 MF   TUR Enes Keskin (on loan from Pendikspor)
60 DF   TUR Özgür Çek
62 DF   TUR Özkan Yiğiter (on loan from Sivasspor)
70 MF   TUR Mete Demir (on loan from Eyüpspor)
77 DF   TUR Uğur Akdemir
87 MF   TUR Abdullah Durak
88 MF   TUR Mert Kabasakal
89 MF   ROU Gabriel Torje (captain)
97 DF   MAD Thomas Fontaine
99 GK   TUR Atalay Gökçe

Out on loanEdit

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Pos. Nation Player
GK   TUR Emir Kavaşoğlu (at Hacettepe 1945 SK until 30 June 2023)
DF   TUR Berat Can Sebat (at Hacettepe 1945 SK until 30 June 2023)
DF   TUR Batuhan Uçan (at 1954 Kelkit Belediyespor until 30 June 2023)
No. Pos. Nation Player
MF   TUR Batuhan Özdemir (at Erbaaspor until 30 June 2023)
FW   TUR Mert Çelik (at Hacettepe 1945 SK until 30 June 2023)
FW   TUR Emirkan Demir (at Hacettepe 1945 SK until 30 June 2023)

Most capped playersEdit

Player Caps Period
1   Tevfik Kutlay 353 1959–72
2   Selçuk Çakmaklı 336 1959–72
3   Avni Okumuş 317 1983–93
4   Zeynel Soyuer 291 1959–71
5   Nihat Baştürk 279 1994–2005
6   Metin Diyadin 265 1988–98
7   Orhan Yüksel 235 1959–66
8   Mehmet Şimşek 228 1993–2001
9   İhsan Temen 219 1959-66
10   Okan Gedikali 207 1982–91

Top goalscorersEdit

Player Goals (Caps) Period
1   Andre Kona N'Gole 72 (145) 1993–2001
2   Avni Okumuş 71 (317) 1983–1993
3   Orhan Yüksel 67 (235) 1959–1966
4   Ümit Karan 59 (150) 1996–2001
5   Souleymane Youla 57 (134) 2001–2005
6   Bogdan Stancu 55 (139) 2013-2020
7   Abdullah Çevrim 50 (154) 1961–1966
8   Zeynel Soyuer 47 (291) 1959–1971
9   Tevfik Kutlay 46 (353) 1959–1972
10   Muammer Nurlu 44 (152) 1983–1989

Former playersEdit



Name Years
Münif Kemal Ak 1923–36
Saffet Gürol 1936–43
Namık Ambarlıoğlu 1943–44
Fevzi Magat 1944–46
Namık Katoğlu 1947–48
Yusuf Bahri 1948–49
Orhan Şeref Apak 1949–50
Reşat Taşer 1950–52
Name Years
Nuri Togay 1952–55
Mümtaz Tarhan 1955–57
Ahmet Salih Korur 1957–58
Orhan Şeref Apak 1958–61
Turhan Ogan 1961–63
İbrahim Sıtkı Hatipoğlu 1964–65
Muslihittin Yılmaz Mete 1965–66
İsmet Sezgin 1966–67
Name Years
Hadi Özbay 1967–68
Necip Türegen 1968–69
Mehmet Ali Tuzcuoğlu 1969–70
Adil Evrensel 1970–72
Sezai Diblan 1972–74
Hasan Şengel 1976–77
İlhan Cavcav 1977–2017
Murat Cavcav 2017–2021
Niyazi Akdaş 2021–

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Eryaman Stadı - Türkiye Stadyumları ve Stadyum Projeleri". 31 May 2019.
  2. ^ "Gençlerbirliği'nin Tarihçesi". (in Turkish). Retrieved 14 April 2018.
  3. ^ "Turkey – List of Ankara League Champions". Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation. Retrieved 27 September 2018.
  4. ^ "Turkey – List of Champions". Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation. Retrieved 14 April 2018.
  5. ^ Genclerbirligi team profile Archived 17 October 2011 at the Wayback Machine (English) accessed 27 January 2012
  6. ^ "A Takimi". Gençlerbirliği S.K.

Further readingEdit

External linksEdit