A post-Final Four nightmare for Fenerbahce

Fenerbahce’s great run in last season’s Euroleague might be a one-season wonder.

And despite competing for a domestic championship in the Turkish Basketball League, Fenerbahce have major concerns leading to next season.

Off the court, Turkish food manufacturer ‘Ulker’ has officially withdrawn its sponsorship rights to Fenerbahce, leaving the Istanbul side.

Ulker, who were title sponsors to Fenerbahce have been in partnership since 2006 have put between €16-19million per season into the club.

Thanks to the title sponsor, Fenerbahce had a budget of approximately €32million last season, the largest in Turkey.

Today though, team president Aziz Yildirim announced that the team will play as “Fenerbahce” next season.

Despite basketball writer Fersu Yahyabeyoglu’s tweets, he later confirmed that ‘Ulker’ will continue as a sponsor and inject funds into the club.

Fenerbahce could be in trouble on the court, as reigning Euroleague regular season MVP Nemanja Bjelica is very likely to leave the club this summer and head to the NBA.

Serbian international Bjelica was selected as the 35th pick in the second round of the 2010 NBA Draft by the Washington Wizards and his decision to stay in Europe has paid dividends as he led Fenerbahce to its first ever Final Four last May by averaging 12.1 points and 8.5 rebounds a game.

His breakthrough season in the Euroleague looks to have given Bjelica the belief that he can compete in the NBA.

Sources in Turkey have also revealed that coach Zeljko Obradovic has still yet to sign a new contract with Fenerbahce.

It was confirmed that Obradovic had inked a two-year deal with the club worth €3million per season, but it is rumoured that the Serbian has yet to put pen to paper.

This could be a nail biting season ahead on the Asian side of Istanbul.