Fonseca: We take each and every match seriously

Thursday, November 24, 2016



The Pitmen’s head coach answered the questions from reporters after the meeting with Konyaspor

- Good evening. Before starting to talk about the game, I would like to thank all the fans who have come to the stadium and rooted for Shakhtar. The atmosphere was fantastic. They supported us, which is very important and pleasant. Thank you so much! We have turned in a perfect display. From the off, we were set up to win only, and so it happened. Of course, everything got much easier after the opener. Plus those guys played who don’t appear in such tournaments that often, but they did very well. I am very happy about this victory.

- Did you think before the game that it would be so easy to win?
- In fact, we take each and every match seriously. Today was no exception. We have great respect for the opponents. We know that Konyaspor are a good team. They arrived here after claiming two victories in the Turkish league. And mathematically, it was clear that the opponents still have a chance, and we have some grounds to be cautious. The game proved exciting and challenging. Again, I, of course, am delighted with today's victory.

- I can’t help but ask you about one of my favourite players: Eduardo came off the bench today and scored. His contract is expiring soon. What is his future, and will it be related to Shakhtar?
- For me personally, I very much like all my players. I want to say that Eduardo came on and did well as a substitution player. He fulfilled his objective – scored a goal. I am happy with his today’s performance.

- Very diplomatic.
- As always.

- You have multiple strikers. On what basis do you select the forward for a particular match? And what are your general requirements for a footballer in this role?
- Talking about today's match, as we said earlier, with a guaranteed top spot in the group, we had the possibility to make rotation and give younger lads an opportunity to show themselves. Our permanent striker is Facundo Ferreyra. But now, before the nearest Ukrainian League game, which takes place this coming weekend, I gave him a chance to have some rest. Today, I’ve made this choice. Most often, my decisions are based on our style and on the fact which player is required for the game, based on his attributes. Plus, of course, it is about the players’ dedication: how they are performing at the moment, who is ready to take the field and stand up for his team.

- If you get an offer, will you agree to work in Turkey?
- Now I think only about Shakhtar. I am very happy, I feel good at this club. Honestly, I do not even have any such thoughts. At the moment, I I haven’t thought about leaving, so I cannot answer your question now.

- Did you have an offer from a Turkish club? And if you get one, what will be your reaction?
- No, I’ve never received one. I know Turkish football, what a fantastic atmosphere reigns there, and what great fans they have. I know how strong is their league, - I’ve seen it this year, and last year when I went to Turkey with Braga. Perhaps I might give it a thought one day in the future. But currently, I can’t say anything because I'm at Shakhtar and I'm fine here.

- The Pitmen play in Ukraine, but away – in Lviv. How does this affect the team? You are sitting in the top spot in the league and in the Europa League group: how do you achieve such great results despite the situation?
- When I came here, I knew the difficulties I was facing. We were preparing for that. I can honestly tell you: that’s not easy. But we try to work and motivate the players. And, as you can see from our results, we do it pretty well. Of course, we would like to play at our home stadium in front of our fans. But everything is fine at the moment. They receive us very well. We will continue to work and give our all.

- You will be playing your closing group stage game against Braga – your former team towards whom you must have some special feelings. Shakhtar are unreachable in the top spot in the group, with the Portuguese being tied 2-2 today and really needing more points. How will you prepare for the final encounter? Will we be able to see about the same line-up as today?
- I well understand your question. I can tell you that our ambitions will remain the same. It would be nice to finish the group stage with victories only. Of course, we will pursue just this goal. Specifically, we are not going to make life any easier for Braga.