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Turkey Football Shirt Will Remain a World Cup Rarity This Summer

The Turkey national soccer team has an interesting history at the World Cup. Of the 19 World Cup tournaments on the books, the red and white colors of the Turkey football shirt have only made two appearances. The first of those came in 1954, when the Turkish team was eliminated in the first round of its inaugural tournament appearance. The second occurred in 2002, when Turkey somewhat inexplicably made it to the semifinals and came in third place, toppling some major soccer heavyweights along the way.

Unfortunately for fans of the Turkey national team, there won’t be an opportunity for similar upsets at this summer’s World Cup in Brazil. Turkey continued its streak of missed qualifications and will not be appearing at all in the World Cup. However, the team is already preparing for its next phase, which is the qualification for the 2016 European Championships in France. In fact, the Turkey home jersey 2014 – 2015 that player’s will wear for that campaign is already available at the Soccer Box store!

Despite the fact that the Turkish team has not had the most success on the global soccer stage, there is no denying the charm of the Turkey football shirt. Designed with a classic look that resembles a flag more than a jersey, the shirts bear the craftsmanship that can always be expected from Nike, as well as the iconic moon and star crest that is Turkey’s symbol.

The 2002 Phenomenon

While the Turkey home jersey 2014 – 2015 will not be appearing in this year’s World Cup (and while Turkey hasn’t played in either of the last two World Cup events), fans still harbor hope that their team will eventually reach global prominence. Much of that hope, unsurprisingly, is tied to the Cinderella success narrative that the Turkish team created at the 2002 World Cup.

Indeed, the year was a golden one for Turkish soccer fans, as their team sailed through the group stage (bearing both Costa Rica and China PR, and mostly holding its own in a loss against Brazil) and into the knockout stage. To be fair, Turkey drew one of the easier progressions of the tournament, playing against other teams that had never won the World Cup, like Japan and Senegal, and beating each 1-0 in the round of 16 and the quarterfinals.

In the semis, Turkey again encountered Brazil and again lost, but not by a landslide. Brazil would go on to shut Germany out in the finals and claim its fifth World Cup title, while the Turkey football shirt was regaled with its highest glory yet in the consolation match, beating host team South Korea to take the third place finish.

A 2008 Repeat

Turkey hasn’t been back on the World Cup stage since that triumphant 2002 campaign, but the team has experienced similar echoes of success, most notably in the 2008 European Championships. There, Turkey again came in second in its group (to Portugal, beating both the Czech Republic and Switzerland in the process), and performed admirably in the knockout rounds.

An extra time victory in the quarterfinals (against Croatia) gave way to an exciting and spirited match between Turkey and Germany in the semifinals. Turkey ultimately ceded the victory to Germany in a 2-3 loss, but the team had certainly shown its ability to stand shoulder to shoulder with some of the best teams in Europe (and, given Germany’s current number 2 ranking by FIFA, in the world).

Euro 2016

After the rousing 2008 success described above, Turkey failed to qualify for Euro 2012. This September, players for the team will don the Turkey home jersey 2014 – 2015 as part of UEFA Qualifying Group A. The other teams in the group include the Netherlands, the Czech Republic, Latvia, Iceland, and Kazakhstan. Turkey’s first qualifying match will come on September 9 against Iceland.

Can the Turkey national football team return to the European Championships in 2016 and regain the momentum it was building in 2008, or will the Turkey football shirt again be absent from the Euro tournament? If you are hoping for the former answer, stop by Soccer Box right away to stock up on Turkey team merchandise!