Versatile Arda is Turkey's driving force

Versatile Arda is Turkey's driving force
Çarşamba 25.05.2016 08:22

Turkey's ambitions of reaching the Euro 2016 knockout stages will largely depend on the form of their inspirational captain Arda Turan, who has had a patchy season with his new club Barcelona.

The 29-year-old midfielder joined Barca from Atletico Madrid in July 2015 but was sidelined for six months by the club's transfer ban which meant he made his debut only in January.

He has, though, failed to establish himself as a regular starter in the wake of stiff competition and been used mainly as a substitute.

For Turkey he remains the main man and his array of skills, which made him one of Atletico's key players during his four-year spell with the club, will be their best hope of avoiding an early exit in France.

Pace and dazzling footwork combined with an eye for goal ensure he is a driving force, bossing a midfield that includes the talented Hakan Caljanoglu, Selcuk Inan and Nuri Sahin.

For inspiration, Arda will have his memories of Euro 2008 when he scored in comeback wins over Switzerland and the Czech Republic as Turkey reached the semi-finals.

More recently, Arda was also on target in a stunning 3-0 win over Netherlands which kept Turkey's Euro 2016 qualifying campaign alive before they completed their recovery from a poor start with wins over the Czech Republic and Iceland.