Former Turkey striker Nihat Kahveci has heaped praise on Inter midfielder Hakan Calhanoglu, likening his passing ability to Barcelona icon Xavi.
Appearing as a pundit on Turkish television broadcaster TRT Spor, and as reported by FCInterNews.it, the ex-Villarreal forward offered his assessment on Turkey’s 6-0 thrashing of Gibraltar in 2022 World Cup Qualifying yesterday.
“We said we have to be satisfied without looking at the score. I’m satisfied. We played well like this, willing and determined,” Nihat declared.
The 41-year-old was particularly impressed with the performance of Calhanoglu and felt that Turkey were in a strong position to secure at least a play-off spot in Group G, ahead of their final match.
“If we do 60% of what we did against Gibraltar against Montenegro, we will win. In this match we did everything. “And Hakan Calhanoglu made those passes that Xavi used to do.”
Nihat scored 19 goals in 69 caps for Turkey between 2000 and 2010, helping them secure third place at the 2002 World Cup before firing them to the semi-finals of Euro 2008.
Calhanoglu, who joined Inter from rivals AC Milan this summer, has represented Turkey on 64 occasions, scoring 14 goals, and featured at both Euro 2016 and Euro 2020 for his national team.