LITHUANIA – SAINT PETERSBURG 0:5 (0:1)
January 9th, 2016, St. Petersburg, Peterburgsky SCC, 3000 spectators
Best players: Edvinas Kloniunas, Vitaly Gorulyov
Post match comments
Svajunas Cesnulis, Head coach of team Lithuania:
– The result speaks for itself. We lost everywhere. I am completely discontent with our three goals conceded in five minutes in the second game in a row. And if we lacked energy in the previous game, today the players had to be ready, but they were not. Now we only have to congratulate the opponents with a victory, they were better by all means today.
– You played almost equally in the first half. What happened to the players in the second half? Why did the team fall apart?
– When we made five substitutions – having it planned – the play connections got broken. We made many mistakes, especially in central defense, and the goalkeeper didn't save us from the third goal: he failed to catch the ball. And such individual mistakes led to the situation that our guys gave up.
– You said you were preparing a team for the future. Which players of this team will be able to play further?
– The coaching staff determined that seven players from this team will have chances to play on a more professional level. The others will have to struggle harder and to improve in order to get into that team. They still have ten months to show themselves.
Vladimir Kazachionok, Head coach of team St. Petersburg:
– Despite the final score I can say the game was not easy. But we are happy that nobody got injured and everyone is healthy. Today we gave everyone an opportunity to play. And I think the movement of the players was decent. Though it was Lithuania that let us have this movement. This raises our optimism about future games. But again I am happy we have no injuries.
– Your game was closing the group stage and all the competitors were already fixed in the standings. You had a choice which team to play in play-offs. Did you think about it?
– We are not thinking about our opponents, we don't need this. I didn't even see the standings leaving the calculations to the others. The only thing I knew was that we would play Russia...
– Is this scary?
– For Russia? I don't know. (audience laughing)
– Your player has scored directly from a free kick taking it almost from the goal line. Was the player improvising or are you training such shots?
– What do you think yourself? Can you score a direct goal from a corner kick? Yes, you can, but it happens once in five years. It's the same here. The player was brave enough to take such a shot and scored. He was great to play so. It is very important especially in such games when you succeed in everything. The guys got "wings" and saw that a lot is working out. Why not take risks and try?
– You substituted Obliakov leaving him without a chance to score in this game...
– It was not me who did not let him score, it was Lithuania. All the substitutions were planned. Well, not all, but we had to spread the load since we play a lot and the guys get tired. So we gave a rest to some and we let the others play.
– The score could have been bigger but for the lost chances. Aren't you worried about this situation prior to semi-finals?
– Of course, I am worried. It's clear that we can't convert many chances in the game. And I don't have time to watch these moments and to carefully analyze them. That's why I have to give only simplified explanations on how it should be done. And, hence, we have a situation – we can score a lot and can score nothing.
– The team of St. Petersburg has never won Granatkin Memorial. Do you have a goal to interrupt this tradition?
– The appetite comes once you start eating. So we need to move step-by-step and from game to game. Firstly, we are interested in a semifinal.
– We are surprised that you make a lot of substitutions at once. Aren't you afraid the fresh players won't "fit" the game? Today the example of your colleague has showed it is possible?
– Let's say this. We did not have many pretensions to our players, but three or four players were not disciplined in the first half. So we made a decision about substitutions and they left the pitch. There is discipline and everyone has to follow it.
#26 Lithuania – St. Petersburg