Istanbul doesn’t feel a megacity overwhelmed by football suckers which will be a relief for Turkish authorities.
But 20,000 Manchester City suckers are anticipated then to see if their side can eventually win the titleholders League by beating Inter Milan on Saturday night.
Visiting police from England feel more hopeful there will not be any of the chaos of last time’s final in Paris where they weren’t allowed to help the Liverpool suckers subordinated to dangerous conditions.
” We did not work with Paris on last time’s titleholders League medications and were happy the Turks accepted our assignation,” said Mark Roberts, British football policing lead.
” We’ve been working nearly with our Turkish counterparts to help them understand British culture and traditions around football so they can interpret the geste of our travelling Man City suckers and deliver a commensurate response- pressing the difference between artistic geste and felonious acts.”
British officers have no policing powers then but they can advise- helping to defuse any tense situations.
City suckers are just wanting to see their platoon achieve sporting greatness.
Playmaker Kevin De Bruyne said after arriving in Turkey” If you can win the titleholders League, you’ve reached one of the biggest effects you can.”
A treble could be completed this weekend that would have sounded unconceivable when their platoon was playing in the third division 25 times agone.
Only one English platoon has completed a reach of the titleholders League, Premier League and FA Mug before- City’s rivals, Manchester United, back in 1999 under Sir Alex Ferguson.
As one addict told us around Taksim Square” We do it the hard ways. We have had the tough times. This is our time.”
It’s City’s time to confirm their place among football’s nobility.
But it’s about so much further than sporting status if they can eventually win the titleholders League.
This is about how a state and its autonomous wealth can be used to transfigure a club and gain a soft power tool.
There is some geopolitical influence to be won, as well as the jewel- with proprietor Sheik Mansour the vice chairman of the United Arab Emirates.
Abu Dhabi has handed the fiscal muscle behind City’s metamorphosis into a footballing force but that sparked examinations into how legitimately the team has been financed.
But suckers just see critics as invidious of their success.
Success, they hope, to be celebrated at a final with none of the off- field issues of last time’s showpiece.