Marlos: We’ll start to improvise in the second half

On the eve of the first match with Fenerbahce in the third qualifying round of the Champions League, Shakhtar’s midfielder granted an interview to the official website.

- Marlos, do you have enough information about the opponents, considering that Fenerbahce have not played official matches this season?
- They are a top team. There is no need to watch their latest matches to know who they are. The game will not be easy. Personally, I am a fan of the Turkish league, because it is very strong, in terms of technique as well. Players’ skill set makes it interesting. We watched the video together with Mister, studied the opponents and continue our preparation.

- A new coach has taken over at Fenerbahce, strong players have been signed. Shakhtar have lost a few leaders. How will this affect the game?
- The new coach and new players always try to show their best. The match will definitely be difficult, we know that. But Shakhtar went to Istanbul with players who are familiar with the principles and style of our team’s play. We all know what to do on the field.

- Are Shakhtar faced with a task of gaining optimal shape for a game with Fenerbahce? Or is it too early?
- We have prepared for this match and the start of the Champions League. The Ukrainian championship has already kicked off, we have played two matches - that's a plus for us. Of course, it is only the beginning of the season, and Shakhtar usually gain optimal shape by the end of summer - early autumn. But we were getting ready, preparing! I think the team are strong enough to win.

- Fenerbahce will attack on their pitch. Shakhtar can also play on the counterattack, but it is not the style of the team. How are you going to operate? How are you going to counter the opponents?
- It will be a very interesting match between two quality teams that show attacking football. Indeed, there will be quick counterattacks. We must fight! I think in the course of the game we will see how Fenerbahce operate, adjust to the game and, if necessary, start to improvise in the second half.

- In Turkey, they love Mister very much, but he worked for Galatasaray and Besiktas... What to expect from the fans? Will the majority of them be rooting for Fenerbahce or Shakhtar?
- Mister did a very good job in Turkey! I am sure they remember that. So I think that the fans of Galatasaray and Besiktas, most likely, will support Shakhtar. Probably, not in such an enthusiastic manner as the fans of Fenerbahce will root for their team, but still it is very helpful to us!

- Fenerbahce have not participated in the European competitions for a long time through suspension, so they will be highly motivated. Will it create additional difficulties for Shakhtar?
- Their motivation will be a positive thing for us - we will try to use their attitude against them! There are a lot of newcomers at Fenerbahce, but, despite this, we are stronger.