Internationally- known midfielder Ricardo Quaresma has signed a 3-year contract with Beşiktaş in front of thousands cheering and chanting fans.The signing ceremony took place at the BJK Inonu Stadium, where nearly 25 thousand fans witnessed the historical event.
A platform with table and chairs was set up in the middle of the pitch for the signing act. While two giant video screens placed at both sides of the platform displayed the pictures of the Portuguese star, several giant sized jerseys bearing his number “7” were hung from the top of the stands.
A REAL MATCH ATMOSPHERE
Wearing their own Black and White jerseys the fans packed the 2/3 of the stadium and created a real match atmosphere with the composer Birol Can’s Beşiktaş marches and songs. The ceremony was hosted by the popular TV Star Itır Esen.
Nearly an hour after the fans filled their reserved seats, Ricardo Quaresma, in full Beşiktaş uniform, entered the pitch from the tunnel to ease the impatience of the fans. When the Portuguse midfielder walked towards the platform, hundreds of torches were lit from the stands, turning BJK Inonu Stadium into a real hell.
Beşiktaş’s young midfielder Rıdvan Şimşek, who broke his leg at the end of the season, handed his number 7 jersey to the newcomer. After putting his new jersey on, Quaresma first greeted the fans and then joined the Beşiktaş Chairman Yıldırım Demirören and Head of Football Committee Serdar Adalı on the platform.
The three stood on the stage as the crowed cheered them on for minutes. Quaresma then signed the contract, which officially made him a Black Eagle for the next 3 years.
CHAIRMAN DEMİRÖREN: “ONE OF THE GREATEST TRANSFERS WE EVER MADE”
In ensuing address to fans, Chairman Demirören condemned the recent attacks in Hakkari City and added: “When our fans and manager want a player, it is our duty to go out and get him. Quaresma was also seriously interested in playing for us so we had no trouble signing him. With his presence and the blessing of God, I am sure our team will go all the way this season. He is definitely a great asset for Beşiktaş. In few words, Quaresma is one of the greatest transfers we’ve ever made… ” Demirören then gave the Portuguese star a hat with, “We don’t expect everyone support us but it is a unique privilege to be a Beşiktaş supporter,” written on it.
QUARESMA ORCHESTRATES CHEERING
Before signing his contract, Beşiktaş’s new player proceeded to the stands and after watching the outstanding show briefly, joined in the fans and even orchestrated the cheering at times. The fans sparked by his move started cheering, “Q7, Q7 we love you. We will always stand by you”
SIGNED AFTER CHEERING
When the cheering finally subsided, Quaresma was able to sit down and sign his contract. He then grabbed the microphone and delivered a short speech to the fans: “Before anything else, just like my Chairman, I would like express my deep condolences for those Turkish soldiers who have lost their lives during the recent terrorist attacks. I can’t tell you how happy I am to be here. I want everyone to know that I am going to give everything I’ve got for this team. This is a great club and full of football sprit. I think this is the best transfer I’ve ever made in my life. I’ve always wanted to play for a team that appreciated good football. I think I am going to get everything I’ve dreamed for here.”
He also thanked the Beşiktaş Chairman Yıldırım Demirören and his staff for realizing his transfer from Inter, “They’ve put in a lot of effort brining me here, as I’ve promised them, I am promising you to make Beşiktaş a champion next season. To be among you today is a great honor for me. You can count on me.”
NEARLY 25 THOUSAND SHOWED UP
As previously announced by the club, the doors of the stadium were supposed to open at 17:00. But because of the extraordinary fan interest, the management was forced to open the gates hours before the scheduled time. Nearly 25 thousand Beşiktaş fans poured into the stands to witness the event. This was the first time a signing ceremony took place in front of so many fans in Turkey.
FANS GET BALLS AS SOUVENIRS
At the close of the signing ceremony, the internationally acclaimed midfielder came down off the platform and showed his ball control skills for the enjoyment of all. After completing his acts, he threw the balls to the fans. When he was going back to the dressing room, he took a little Beşiktaş fan into his arms and had his photograph taken. After the show, Beşiktaş fans stormed into the nearby Beşiktaş store and tried to be the first in line to purchase a Quresma jersey.