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Braga vs Shakhtar: player comments

Thursday, April 7, 2016



Footballers of the Donetsk team reflect on the UEFA Europa League Last 8 win

Yaroslav Rakitskiy, Shakhtar defender:

- Thanks to our doctor Artur Glushchenko, as well as to the team masseur Igor Grshkovich. They raised me to the feet after injury. Although I have not fully recovered yet - the meniscus cannot be treated quickly. But the progress is already noticeable, I feel fine. As for Braga, they are a good team with fast attacking third and midfield. I really liked the opponents. Today I made only one foul, and in that episode I played the ball and hit his foot, but still earned the card. The referee said that if the player had not fallen, there might have been a goal-scoring attacking move... On the whole, the score is good. We twice netted against Braga, but still could score more goals. Now we are looking forward to April 14th!
Viktor Kovalenko, Shakhtar midfielder:

- Braga were cheered on by the stands. The opponents were confident, but we defended well initially, and then we scored. In the opening minutes we didn’t succeed in everything, but then our play improved. Of course, we might not concede a goal at the end of the game, making it much easier for us in Lviv. So we will have another great major meeting.

Taras Stepanenko, Shakhtar midfielder:

- We purposefully viewed the first 10-15 minutes of Braga’s games and saw how active they are at home. They have technically skilled players, who superbly control the ball. Mister asked us not to put them under pressure, because nearly everyone in their team can make it past an opponent. Therefore we operated more in the zones, trying not to allow the Portuguese to provide dangerous passes. We played well defensively and used our counterattacking chances. The situation with the goal by Rakits’kyy was not a set piece. The decision to deliver it towards the far post was perhaps taken at the last minute. The opponents stayed in the zones, with deliveries going through to the far post. Owing to that, there were dangerous chances, we had to take advantage of what we did well.