SLOVAKIA – SAINT PETERSBURG 0:0
January 7th, 2016, St. Petersburg, Peterburgsky SCC, 2000 spectators
Best players: Matej Oravec, Sergei Bugriyov
Post match comments
Milan Malatinsky, Head coach of team Slovakia:
– In the first half the result was more like a draw. As for the second, team St. Petersburg substituted several players and the game changed its pattern. So we are content with the result that we have in the end.
– You said you were satisfied. You are ahead of your opponent by goal difference, so a draw would be fine for you. Have you decided it already before the match to play for a draw?
– We didn't want a draw before the match, we wanted to win. At the same time, we played against a very strong team with high-quality players. So we are satisfied with this result. And I would like to congratulate the opponent coach with the result and with the team he has.
– Your captain demonstrated effective and spectacular dribbling several times. Do you approve such individual play?
– Of course a forward or another offensive player has to be able to win a one on one duel against the opponent. And they are free to act as they wish. But they have to remember about team play and the tactics we've set before the game.
Vladimir Kazachionok, Head coach of team St. Petersburg:
– A hard game. It was clear from the first game that Slovakia is a robust team with a good lineup. So today we had some troubles.
– Have your purposefully gave up the initiative in the first ten minutes?
– Even though we'd like to give up the initiative they wouldn't take it. They stayed behind. Being the home team we tried to gain more control over the ball, to go forward and attack. But we lacked a bit of speed. We started the second half already in an optimal lineup. It's hard for the guys to play two days in a row. We let some have a rest. However, we deserved this draw and probably even a win.
– Not everything is in the hands of your team now. Will you be hoping that Slovakia loses points?
– Hoping? We'll have what we'll have.
– You've already played against team Slovakia and won. Has your team become stronger or weaker?
– Well, if we have not won today, we became weaker. But this team exists only one month and was built for one month. And it is not serious, to my opinion, to draw any parallels with the last year.
– What was hindering your attacking play - the opponent using the tactics of small fouls?
– There is never just one thing. Yes, we lacked some freshness. We lacked mutual understanding – as I've said, the team has lived only three weeks in this lineup and has to live one more, till the end of the tournament. They haven't played together for youth teams. It doesn't occur to them that when they are first at the ball somebody can push them or kick in the legs. They play romantic football. And they are applied, let me say so, professional methods instead.