Juventus’ Europa League Round of 32 opponents Trabzonspor are the most domestically successful Turkish club outside of Istanbul, and have emerged unbeaten from their 12 European games so far this season under manager Mustafa Reşit Akçay.
Based in Trabzon on the Black Sea, they play in a claret and blue strip at Hüseyin Avni Aker Stadium, a 24,169 capacity ground inaugurated in 1951. Barcelona have been put to the sword there in the past, so the Bianconeri will be taking nothing for granted when they travel to Turkey on Thursday 27 February.
Founded in 1967, Trabzonspor have clinched six Turkish league championships and were the first team based outside Istanbul to do so. They won three in a row between 1978 and 1980 under legendary coach Ahmet Suat Özyazıcı (who has led them to all of their league triumphs bar the last two), and have also lifted a total of eight Turkish cups.
They are currently seventh in the Turkish Super Lig, and in the Europa League they topped Group J ahead of Lazio (who they held to a goalless draw in Rome four days ago).
Finishing the group stage undefeated with 14 points, the side have Olcan Adin to thank for some crucial strikes. The midfielder has been in scintillating European form with five goals in six games, and will certainly be one to watch for Antonio Conte’s men.
Club legend Hami Mandıralı holds both the appearances and goals records, and Trabzonspor can currently count on the European experience of household names Jose Bosingwa, Florent Malouda and Didier Zokora.