Turkey were left hoping for a miracle to qualify for the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa™ after a 1-1 draw against their leading Group 5 rivals Bosnia last night.
"Luck has abandoned us," lamented the daily Taraf on Thursday, while the mass circulation daily Hurriyet headlined: "From now we have to wait for a miracle."
The UEFA EURO 2008 semi-finalists Turkey suffered two losses against Spain and have dropped several points to the group's outsiders. "We're paying the price of points lost against Belgium and Estonia," former player Ridvan Dilmen told the Milliyet newspaper.
Turkey, who finished third in the 2002 FIFA World Cup after beating South Korea 3-2, failed to qualify for the 2006 tournament. However, coach Fatih Terim insisted that he would not be pushed into quitting. "I'm the one who decides what I should do," he said.
For the Turks to finish second in their group and to make the play-offs, they need to win their last two matches against Belgium and Armenia, but also hope that Bosnia, who currently have a four-point advantage, lose both of their final matches against Spain and Estonia.