U21. Shakhtar vs Stal: players’ view

After the match with Stal U21, the Pitmen have shared their impressions.

Serhiy Gorbunov, Shakhtar U21 midfielder:

- There is great merit of Boyarchuk in the goal scored, when he put through on goal. The coach instructed me to play in the final third, so that combination was not accidental. This is my first goal of the season, so I am very happy. Stal are a very good team, tough, uncompromising, constantly challenging for the ball. I think today we deserved a draw, given two sending offs, although there were chances to snatch a win. I had a chance in the second half - I had to play differently instead of trying to lob the goalkeeper. As for the first red card, when Ferreyra was sent off, I did not see what happened there. And the second yellow card looked surprising, because it was a normal situation with players challenging for the ball in midfield. Yes, the foul, but for similar fouls the referee did not punish opponents with cards.

Yevhen Gritsenko, Shakhtar U21:

- I do not remember the matches when we would have to play with nine men. When there are few players on the field, there is more responsibility for the goalkeeper. Yes, a couple of times I made crucial saves, but it's a normal routine. When we conceded, I was unable to help – there was a bad bounce, unfortunately. And in the end, I chose the right position to parry away a shot from close range. We were a bit short of discipline and attitude to win today. Although our motivation ahead of the Stal clash was no different whether the team were sitting in the third place or the eighth. Last season, it was Metalurh Donetsk, and many boys remained in the line-up, and the matches with them were hard too.

Dmytro Steflyuk, Shakhtar U21 defender:

- During my time at the Academy, I had to play in the holding midfield area. Instructions before taking to the field proved to be spontaneous, because I had to replace Kiryukhantsev at right back, and during that moment Gorbunov got injured, whom I replaced. We played with three holding midfielders - because the situation demanded that. Only one striker was left, and he needed help too. We were preparing for a difficult game, but certainly did not expect that everything would be so complicated. Of course, we are pleased that we managed to cope being reduced to nine men. The main focus during the preparations for the match was Stal’s set pieces, and in this respect we did not allow them anything to do. The next match will take place against Olimpik; it does not look easy either, especially since the opponents play their home matches on artificial turf. But our task is to win every game.