You regularly see Turkish clubs in the Champions League, Europa League and Conference League. What about their own league and betting on Süper Lig however?
History of the Süper Lig
Betting on Süper Lig today is preceded by rich history. Football was introduced to Turkey by Englishmen around the beginning of the 20th century. Initially, it was mainly played in and around Istanbul. The Istanbul Football League was therefore the first football league in Turkey. In the early 1920s, other major cities in Turkey would follow with their own leagues.
In 1924, the first Turkish football league would start (Türkiye Futbol Şampiyonası). This league would continue until 1951. Harbiye from Istanbul would become the first champion. Under the name Harp Okulu, that club would become champions a total of three times. Fenerbahçe also won three league titles at the time, Besiktas and Genclerbirligi two.
Turkey does not recognise championships
Between 1937 and 1950, the Turkish Football Federation also played a National Division. Fenerbahçe won that league no fewer than six times. Besiktas was the best three times and Galatasaray (and Günes) once.
The oddity is that the Turkish Football Association organised both the Turkish Championship (1924-1951) and the National Division (1937-1950), but did not recognise both competitions as national championships.
After a few years without football in the early 1950s, the Federation Cup was held in 1956-1957. A competition to determine the Europa Cup I participant. The competition was first a qualifying round (or two) with then one or two final groups. Besiktas won both editions of the Federation Cup which was succeeded by the Süper Lig in 1959.
It was only in 2002 that the Turkish Football Federation recognised these competitions as national titles (for Besiktas, that is). The 1960s were actually the kick-off for betting on Süper Lig however.
Süper Lig: Turkey professionalises football
In 1959, the Turkish league as we know it today finally arrived: the Süper Lig. The best clubs from Ankara, Istanbul and Izmir participated. The sixteen teams were divided into two groups of eight. All clubs played each other twice and the best club from each group played the final over two matches. In 1959, Fenerbahçe lost the first match 1-0 to Galatasaray, but won the second 4-0.
The following season (1959-1960), 20 clubs were put together in one big league. Besiktas became convincing champions, ahead of those other well-known clubs Fenerbahçe and Galatasaray.
All three of those clubs were from Istanbul and would split championships between them for over 15 years: eight for Fenerbahçe, six for Galatasaray and three for Besiktas. So for the outright winner bet when betting on Süper Lig, it was shifting points. Poor Eskisehirspor came second three times, and third twice. Never champion however. It did in 1940, but that did not count for the Turkish league.
Trabzonspor shows itself in Turkey
In 1975-1976, basically out of nowhere, Trabzonspor suddenly emerged as a top club in Turkey. The club had been promoted to the highest level in 1973-1974 and finished ninth in 1974-1975. It did make it to the final of the Turkish Cup. Then suddenly a hegemony of the club in the Süper Lig began.
Between 1976 and 1980, Trabzonspor became champions four times and runners-up once. Moreover, it won the Turkish Cup three times in a row between 1977 and 1979. In 1981 and 1984, the club grabbed the league title again, with second place twice in between. Ahmet Suat Özyazıcı was the most successful coach with four league titles and three cups.
In between, Özkan Sümer won two titles with Trabzonspor. The club was unbeatable at home in those years: between 1975 and 1982, they were unbeaten for no less than 90 home matches in a row. With obviously far-reaching implications for Trabzonspor’s odds when betting on Süper Lig.
Back to Besiktas, Galatasaray and Fenerbahçe
Almost as quickly as Trabzonspor rose to the top of Turkey, it also slumped again. After the title in 1984, the club went to the middle of the Süper Lig. In the 1990s, Trabzonspor did finish third and second several times, but another title would be a long time coming.
No, the clubs from Istanbul took over again in Turkey. Mainly Besiktas and Galatasaray would dominate the Turkish league until 2003. Besiktas enjoyed dominance in the Süper Lig in the early 1990s, Galatasaray from 1993 to 2000. Occasionally they left a championship to Fenerbahçe.
Apart from Trabzonspor, few other clubs even made it into the top three in those years. Sure bets on Süper Lig, but more interesting value bets were more often with the clubs below them.
Since 2003, Turkey’s Big Three have shared the titles pretty neatly. Fenerbahçe five, Besiktas four, Galatasaray seven. That still leaves three national titles.
The ‘odd ones out’ were Bursaspor in 2010, Istanbul Basaksehir in 2020 and old friend Trabzonspor in 2022. Talk about value bets for betting on Süper Lig…
Statistics Süper Lig
In Turkey a clear top three of clubs can be distinguished. It’s all Istanbul that counts. Galatasaray has 22 national titles in the Süper Lig, Fenerbahçe 19 and Besiktas 16.
Those three are also the only clubs that have never been relegated since 1959. In a creditable fourth place we find Trabzonspor with 7. Istanbul Basaksehir and Bursaspor both have one.
By the way, if we look at all the national titles since 1924 including the Turkish Championship and the National Division, we see more different champions. The top three remain the same however, albeit in a different order: Fenerbahçe 28, Galatasaray 22 and Besiktas 21.
Top scorers Süper Lig
For the best goal scorers in Turkey, we have to look mainly at Galatasaray. Tanju Çolak had already become top scorer for Samsunspor in 1986 and 1987, and was then bought by Galatasaray. At that club, he became Turkey’s top scorer three more times. With 240 goals in 282 games, he is only ahead of one player on the all-time list.
That player was his successor in the striker position at Galatasaray in 1992. Who does not remember the legendary Hakan Şükür? He joined ‘Gala’ in 1992 after five years at minor clubs. In eight seasons at the club, he scored 173 goals.
After three years abroad, Şükür returned to Galatasaray in 2003. Until the end of his career in 2008, he scored just enough to pass Çolak with nine goals, albeit in 200 more duels. Metin Oktay has the most top scorer titles with six, all with Galatasaray between 1959-1969. So in terms of goal scorer, Galatasaray delivered the most when betting on Süper Lig.
Hakan Şükür, Suat Kaya, Bülent Korkmaz and Fatih Terim
Incidentally, the tall striker holds another record in the Süper Lig: most championships. With Galatasaray, Hakan Şükür became champion of Turkey eight times. He shares that record with Suat Kaya and Bülent Korkmaz, with whom he played together for a long time at Galatasaray. Arif Erdem and Okan Buruk stand on seven titles, also in those successful 1990s and early 2000s of Galatasaray. Moreover, they all won the UEFA Cup in 2000.
Another name inextricably linked with Galatasaray is that of Fatih Terim. Between 1974 and 1985, he was already a player of the club, but only won the cup three times. Since 1996, in various periods as coach, he would win the national title eight times and that 2000 UEFA Cup. In between, he was also Turkey’s national coach three times, culminating in the semi-final at the 2008 European Championship.
Betting on Süper Lig
So in recent years, the Turkish league has become more exciting, with more title contenders. Sometimes, a nice cult player comes from there, like the famous Burak Yilmaz.
In terms of level, the Süper Lig is quite a bit below the Big Five: Premier League, La Liga, Bundesliga, Serie A and Ligue 1. Don’t let that stop you from betting on football in Turkey however.
Betting on Süper Lig can easily be done at Mobile Wins. Where you will find the best promotions, bonuses, odds boosts and free bets.
The “Eternal Rivalry” between Galatasaray and Fenerbahçe is one of the most intense and historic derbies in Turkish football. Matches between these clubs are a showcase of passion and competition.
The “Turkish Super Lig Underdog Phenomenon” refers to the league’s reputation for producing surprising results, where underdog teams often upset favorites. Bettors consider this factor when evaluating odds.
Turkish Super Lig derbies, known for their intense rivalries, attract significant attention from sports bettors. Betting trends can shift dramatically depending on the outcomes of these matches.
The Turkish Super Lig’s competitive balance means that unexpected outcomes are common. Sports bettors need to consider team strengths and weaknesses carefully when placing bets.
The Turkish Super Lig features several iconic derbies that highlight the intense rivalries within Turkish football. Some of the prominent derbies include:
Intercontinental Derby (Galatasaray vs. Fenerbahçe): The “Eternal Rivalry” between Galatasaray and Fenerbahçe is one of the most fiercely contested and emotionally charged clashes in world football.
Istanbul Derby (Galatasaray vs. Beşiktaş): The Istanbul Derby showcases the fierce competition between Galatasaray and Beşiktaş, two of Istanbul’s football powerhouses.
Anatolian Derby (Trabzonspor vs. Fenerbahçe): The Anatolian Derby between Trabzonspor and Fenerbahçe adds a regional flavor to the league and is marked by strong rivalry and passionate fan support.
Izmir Derby (Karşıyaka vs. Göztepe): The Izmir Derby highlights the intense rivalry between Karşıyaka and Göztepe, two clubs from the city of Izmir.
Capital Derby (Gençlerbirliği vs. Ankaragücü): The Capital Derby features the clash between Gençlerbirliği and Ankaragücü, two prominent clubs from the capital city of Ankara.
These derbies are characterized by their historic significance, passionate fanbases, and the emotions they evoke in Turkish football culture.