Here we go again. Politics and football shuffled into each other once again. And once again in Turkey, where, after the furious controversies of recent weeks, the Basaksehir Istanbul was the protagonist of the famous and controversial military salute.
The Turkish club beat the Austrians side Wolfsberger 1-0, allowing Roma to stay on top of the Europa League group J in spite of the bitter draw against Borussia Mönchengladbach. And, after the goal of Irfan Kahveci, four of Basaksehir players were pictured making the gesture of paying homage to the Turkish troops, protagonists of the invasion in Syria.
Among the four in question, there was an old acquaintance of Italian football: the former Rossoneri Robinho, alongside Bosnian Visca, Nigerian ace Okechukwu and Kahveci.
The episode follows a few weeks of similar actions that occurred during the international both on social media and in the field. There have been similar salutes in Serie A with Juventus ace Demiral and Roma star Cengiz Under performing this during celebrations.
This is part of the problem that football faces as it tries to be neutral promoting fair play. However, it is expected that political affiliation will always spill onto the pitch occasionally.
Meanwhile, Santos President José Carlos Peres opened the doors of Vila Belmiro to a possible return of Robinho. However, it is unknown whether this could be possible due to his physical conditions. The club fears that the player will not be able to repeat what he did earlier in his club career.
According to a UOL publication, the fear is that Robinho will not be able to adapt to the intense way of acting of coach Jorge Sampaoli. The Argentine likes the participation of all athletes in the marking and the offensive sector.