Taras Stepanenko: We have to give our best before PSG clash

Shakhtar’s midfielder has shared his thoughts about the upcoming league match.

- Taras, your games with Olimpik are always uncompromising. Why are the games like that with these opponents?
- Like it or not, this is derby. The opponents are also from Donetsk. The boys want to show what they are like as a team. They play hard and aggressive to get results.

- Olimpik are hardly a team that play only defensive football...
- Their style involves short passing. They try to play combination football. Olimpik do not always succeed in that, if you look at the latest results. But the desire is there! So the result will come.

- Last season, Olimpik showed good results for the team as the Premier League debutants. Now they are sitting in the 12th place. Why is it so, in your opinion?
- It happens almost in every season, when the team are on the rise a training camp; they are gaining points, everything is working out well. But it happens the other way around too: they first fall into the pit, and then start to get out of it. The team of this level cannot play consistently throughout the season: there are ups and downs.

- Roman Sanjar stated that Olimpik still cannot find their game. Do you think that Shakhtar can preserve some energy in this regard ahead of the PSG clash?
- On the contrary, before the PSG tie we need to give our best, we have to win and try to score as many goals as we can. Especially before the match with the French side, we will have enough time to recover. I do not think it's worth preserving energy. And then, if all goes well and the result is satisfactory, we will see. But the game starts at 0-0. So we need to pay attention to the opponents in order not to lose points.

- After the red card in Madrid you will not take part in the game with PSG. 
- I do not know if I play in the match with Olimpik, playing practise is always good. Whatever level you are as a footballer, if you do not play, it is hard to get into the rhythm. Because you form is disappearing, confidence may disappear. Naturally, for each player it is very important to play, regardless of who your opponents are. And if you miss a match, there may be psychological uncertainty, because the training, whatever difficult it may be is not a game.