DeAndre Yedlin’s return helped spark Galatasaray’s furious closing sprint, but it ultimately fell one goal short of winning the Turkish Süper Lig. Galatasaray finished the season on a six-game winning streak and eight-game unbeaten run with Yedlin starting the final three games. Besiktas, however, was able to grab a late goal in their season finale that allowed them to equal Galatasaray on 84 points and beat them out by one on goal-difference.
Still, the closing sprint allowed Galatasary to move into Turkey’s second Champions League qualifying spot. They were able to beat out Fenerbahce by two points.
That means Galatasaray will begin next season in the second qualifying round of Champions League. They’ll need to advance through three rounds in order to qualify for the Champions League group stage. Winning the Süper Lig would have put them straight into the final qualifying round.
Yedlin will join fellow former Sounder Henry Wingo’s Ferencvaros in the Champions League qualifying rounds. Ferencvaros won the Hungarian league a few weeks ago and will enter the tournament a round earlier. Both are trying to become the first Washingtonian to play in the Champions League group stage.
Only about six weeks ago, Yedlin’s season looked like it might be finished when he suffered a nasty-looking injury on April 11. But the ankle injury ended up not being as serious as feared and he was able to return to action about a month later. Yedlin followed up two 90-minute performances by being one of three players pulled at halftime in an effort to overcome a 1-0 deficit.
Yedlin was also among 40 players named to the United States men’s national team’s preliminary roster for Nations League. A final 23-man roster should be announced next week.