Rustu Recber coronavirus
Photo by sampics/Corbis via Getty Images

Turkish legend Rustu Recber isolated in hospital with coronavirus

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Turkey’s all-time caps leader has been hospitalized while fighting coronavirus.

Rustu Recber is in isolation and his wife said “while everything was normal, we are still in shock by the sudden and rapidly developing symptoms.”

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Rustu played for Fenerbahce, Antalyaspor, and Besiktas in a 24-year career which saw him earn 120 caps. He also had a 7-match cameo with Barcelona in 2003/04 and started his career with Burdurgucu.

Rustu’s wife Isil and his two children tested negative, according to the BBC.

From Sky Sports:

Isil Recber said her husband was isolated at the hospital and that they were not allowed to visit. “This is a critical period and very difficult. May God give a speedy recovery to all the patients, including my husband,” she said.

He was a member of the World Cup All-Star team and UEFA Team of the Year in 2002, when he led Turkey to third place at the World Cup. He also helped Turkey to quarterfinal and semifinal runs at EURO.

Rustu won four Turkish Super Lig titles with Fenerbahce and one more with Besiktas.

Samuel Eto’o appointed player-manager at Turkish club Antalyaspor

Associated Press
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One of the best strikers of his generation, Samuel Eto'o is making his first move into management.

The 34-year-old signed with Turkish club Antalyaspor this summer, and has now been appointed interim player-manager after former boss Yusuf Simsek had his contract terminated earlier this month.

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Eto’o is currently the Super Lig’s leading scorer, grabbing 13 goals in his first 15 matches with Antalyaspor. The club has given the striker three matches to prove himself, and will then re-evaluate the situation after the league’s winter break.

The Cameroonian scored more than 100 goals during his tenure at Barcelona, where he won three La Liga titles along with two Champions League titles. After winning the treble with Barca in 2009, Eto’o moved to Inter Milan where he won the treble in 2010 under Jose Mourinho. He is the only player to win two consecutive trebles with two different teams, and is the only African player to win the Champions League three times.

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The striker would be reunited with Mourinho when he joined Chelsea for one season in 2013, then playing briefly for Everton before moving away from the Premier League.

In 2005, Eto’o finished third in the voting for FIFA World Player of the Year, and has been named African Player of the Year a record four times. The top scorer for the Cameroon national team, Eto’o competed in four World Cups and six African Cup of Nations. He won the Cup of Nations twice, and is the tournament’s all-time leading goalscorer.

Club president: Ronaldinho has agreed terms with Turkish side Antalyaspor


Just last week it was announced that Brazilian superstar Ronaldinho and Liga MX side Queretaro had mutually agreed to part ways after the 35-year-old had spent less than a year at the Mexican club, which made the ex-Barcelona and AC Milan (among others) trickster a free to sign with any club in the world.

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Right from the start, I was banging the “I know it’s going to be tempting, but don’t do it, MLS teams” drum. In short, Ronaldinho’s best days are far, far behind him, and he’s not genuinely cared about playing and/or winning for roughly five years now — not even to mention the fact he’d want to be paid similarly to Sebastian Giovinco and Kaka, both of whom are producing at an All-Star level).

As it turns out, 20 Major League Soccer teams knew that Ronaldinho was available on a free transfer, and 20 MLS teams passed on the man who was for a short period of time arguably the best player in the world pre-Lionel Messi (or they were outbid, thankfully).

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So where’s ‘Dinho headed to next? According to Antalyaspor club president Gultekin Gencer, the answer is Turkey. Antalyaspor, a Turkish Super League (top division) side after gaining promotion from the second division last season, announced the signing of former Barcelona and Inter Milan (among others) striker Samuel Eto’o last week.

Gencer, speaking to TRT Spor on the club’s pursuit of Ronaldinho (quotes via the Daily Mail):

“We reached an agreement with Ronaldinho. I think within two days it’ll be made official.

“Besides Eto’o and Ronaldinho, we will make another big-name signing. When it’s done, we’ll set the world on fire!”

Ronaldinho mutually parts ways with Queretaro, could continue career in Turkey

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Both Ronaldinho and his Liga MX club Queretaro confirmed the aging Brazilian superstar has terminated his contract via mutual consent with one year left on the deal.

The 35-year-old former Ballon d’Or winner left on good terms after making 27 appearances and scoring eight goals, thanking the club and Mexican fans via Twitter, saying “every day I lived with you was special.” He also said, “To my team-mates thank you very much for every day of work, every moment, every laugh, our conversations in the hotel. I learned a lot during this stay.”

Queretaro’s press release, meanwhile, said, “The Brazilian’s experience was a major contribution in every way. Spending time with each of his teammates was key for personal and professional growth.”

Ronaldinho has been linked with newly-promoted Turkish club Antalyaspor, where the president has confirmed contract talks are set to begin. Former Chelsea star Samuel Eto’o has already signed for the Super Lig club after they bounced back to the top flight a year after relegation.