Andriy Pyatov: We understood that we had no room for error
The Pitmen’s goalkeeper has reflected on the Ukraine national team reaching the Euro 2016 finals.
- Of course, the whole team are in great mood! Finally, we put an end to the awful tradition to reach the Euros. I think the guys deserve it. Yesterday, we brought a celebration to the whole country. And we even celebrated it ourselves – we drank a little champagne on the plane! However, we arrived home at 5:00, tired - but it's fine. Anyway we returned delighted and happy.
- What thoughts have you taken to the pitch in Maribor with?
- I would not say that it was too hard mentally, psychologically. Of course, we were seriously motivated for the match and we understood that we had no room for error. But there wasn’t nervousness. Yes, an early goal from Slovenes made us feel shocked for a while, but the guys coped well with it, we pulled ourselves together and did not allow the opponents to create dangerous chances.
- Cleverly disrupting opponents' game!
- Yes, we imposed our game. Although you cannot tell who was imposing the game more. The game was very rough. There were many pauses in the game - a foul after a foul. But this is football: no one wanted to lose, everyone fought for every centimetre of the field, struggled. And the main challenge was not to lose the fight. However, such a goal we had in every qualifying match.
- By the way, about the previous matches. Which qualifier would you single out?
- From this perspective, I can tell about each game. Believe me, any match is special. Yes, I would like to forget some games and never recall, but they are still very important and significant. And though it may sound a bit cliché, but every game is unique story. So, I will not single out any fight, I will just congratulate all the fans on reaching the Euros.
- During a draw Ukraine will be in the second basket...
- In my opinion, it doesn’t matter what opponents we will be drawn against. Anyway, our main goal remains unchanged – we have to show decent football and achieve positive results.