Myron Markevych: We didn’t let Shakhtar gather pace

After the match, the head coach of Dnipro responded to questions from the media.

- What’s changed in your team over a week and how did you manage to win today?
- Indeed, it’s been a difficult week for the team because some players leave, others arrive, and it’s difficult to assess their readiness. The game has revealed that one of them isn’t ready yet. Such is the procedure - we should change something, we try to do something. But the team core have shown their best side today. They operated right defensively, they had well analysed the game of Shakhtar. They fulfilled the basic plan: they didn’t let the opponents gather pace and caught them on the counter.

- How did you manage to motivate the team and how was it possible to block Alex Teixeira?
- I had a word with Fedorchuk, as Alex is currently the main figure at Shakhtar. We have taken this step, although we don’t normally do it, but today I have asked Fedorchuk to mark Teixeira personally. Motivation? As you understand it, if we want to fight for top spots, we just couldn’t lose today. As we lost to Dynamo, lost points against Vorskla, didn’t win in Uzhhorod – we’ve lost a lot. So today, I am grateful to the players. I managed to get it through to them.

- There were two different halves: in the first one your team operated with emphasis on defence, and in the second one you tried to play it end to end. Was it planned or spontaneous?
- We were getting prepared and had a clear understanding that we shouldn’t allow Shakhtar to operate freely. We deliberately chose this tactic, and it has brought us success. Basically, we did everything right, but I want to say that it’s always the second half which we play better. We still have room for improvement.

- In the closing stages, at 1-0, Bezus tried to make it past them near his box, lost the ball and then a dangerous free kick against Dnipro was awarded. What did you feel at that moment?
- Had you been in the dressing room after the game, you would have heard everything about that moment! You know, for a year I’ve been trying to get it sorted with Bezus, for a whole year! He came from Dynamo and starts teaching me how to play football. And whatever I tell him, it doesn’t work. He is a central midfielder, being supposed to play using one or two touches. Just like Teixeira does. In this fashion Bezus fed Mateus: received it and made an assist. And in our case he just tried to make it past one player, second one , third one. He lost the ball, with a penalty awarded against us. Throughout the year I’ve been telling him the same thing, just imagine it! Nothing helps. So, I'll beat him. Just kidding, of course.