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Yıldıray Baştürk (born 24 December 1978 in Hernemarker, West Germanymarker) is a Germanmarker-born Turkishmarker footballer. He is best known for his exceptional close control and vision.


The son of a miner, Baştürk began his football career at Sportfreunde Wanne-Eickel. As a teenager Baştürk played for SG Wattenscheid 09, and his breakthrough in the Bundesliga came with city rivals VfL Bochum, for whom he even played in the UEFA Cup. After the 2001 transfer to Bayer 04 Leverkusen more success was coming his way. Baştürk and Leverkusen finished second in the German league, the German Cup and the 2002 Champions League Final.

In July 2004 he was transferred to Hertha BSC, where he remained until 2007 when his contract expired. Baştürk agreed to join German champions VfB Stuttgart on a Bosman transfer on 28 May 2007 for the start of the 2007–2008 season.

International Career

In 2002 he also played in the 2002 FIFA World Cup, where the Turkish team won the bronze medal. Baştürk currently has 49 caps and 2 goals for Turkey. However, after he was left out of Turkey's 23-man squad for Euro 2008, he said he would never play for the national team as long as Fatih Terim remains as the coach.


  • Although it is customary for Turkish footballers to be known by their first name, Baştürk is usually known by his surname due to his German upbringing and his rise to prominence coming in German football.
  • "Baştürk" means "Chief Turk" in Turkish.



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