Veteran captain Burak Yilmaz scored a hat trick as Turkey defeated the Netherlands 4-2 at home on Wednesday to kick off their World Cup qualifying campaign.
Yilmaz opened the scoring with a deflected shot in the 14th minute of the Group G contest, followed by a penalty 20 minutes later at Istanbul’s Ataturk Olympic Stadium to bring the Turks up 2-0 at halftime.
As Hakan Calhanoglu added the third goal a few seconds into the second half, the game seemed to be virtually over, but two goals in as many minutes offered the Dutch hope of a late revival.
Their momentum was halted, however, by Yilmaz’s stunning free kick, which completed his hat trick and won Turkey’s points.
Yilmaz’s shot from the edge of the area took a deflection off Matthijs de Ligt to beat goalkeeper Tim Krul, who had been pressed into action after Dutch first choice Jasper Cillessen was injured in the warm-up.
Donyell Malen then gave away a penalty on Okay Yokuslu with a sloppy challenge, which Yilmaz converted with an emphatic shot.
Calhanoglu scored the third goal with a speculative attempt from outside the penalty area that fooled Krul.
However, the Ataturk Olympic Stadium, where Liverpool came back from 3-0 down against AC Milan to lift the Champions League final in 2005, appeared to be the site of another famous revival as Davy Klaassen scored in the 75th minute and Luuk de Jong added another 60 seconds later.
Klaassen’s goal was a show of individual excellence, as he brought down a cross from Memphis Depay with a deft touch before spinning two defenders and crashing in from close range.
De Jong swooped on a diving cross for the second goal.
Yilmaz, 35, put an end to Dutch dreams of a revival with a scorching free kick nine minutes from time that restored Turkey’s two-goal lead.
The Dutch were given a penalty three minutes into stoppage time after Ozan Kabak tugged on De Light, but Ugurcan Cakir saved Depay’s attempt to round off a miserable night for the visitors.
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