Shakhtar vs Braga: Pitmen’s comments
Thursday, September 29, 2016
The Donetsk team players shared their impressions of the game
Oleksandr Kucher, Shakhtar defender:
- I think, we won deservedly. We controlled the situation on the field, scored an early goal, created more chances. After the sending-off, we dropped somewhat deeper, but operated in a compact way, not allowing the opponents to create anything near our goal. In this match, we very much wanted to please the coach, because we played today against his former team. How he prepared us? Just as for a regular match. But we realized that it was special for him. It wasn’t our first meeting with Braga, we had enogh time to study the team. We are not going to rest on our laurels, and will try to continue showcasing great performance and achieve results. Regarding Fred’s being sent off, he didn’t seem to fake it. At least that episode wasn’t worth a card at all. There was a defender’s touch, and probably in that situation they had to award aa spot kick and punish the Portuguese rather than sending our player off.
We weren’t tasked with scoring an early goal. The main thing was claiming a win
Bohdan Butko, Shakhtar defender:
- We weren’t tasked with scoring an early goal. The main thing was claiming a win. It’s true that the match was a little bit rude. It means that the teams were well motivated and did not want to concede. Of course, it’s great that we kept a clean sheet again. After all, our initial goal in the game was reliable defending. To be honest, after Fred was sent off we expected more of Braga, we thought it would be harder. But the Portuguese, in fact, created nothing near our goal. What the coach said at that moment? He asked us to play in a compact manner and try to launch blistering counterattacks. Everyone laughed at the episode when I brought down Paulo Fonseca. When I entered the dressing room, someone was saying that I deserved a yellow card, with someone else saying that I even deserve a red one.
There was fighting for the ball, it bounced to me, and I shot it. I wouldn’t say that I intended so, but it turned out well
Taras Stepanenko, Shakhtar midfielder:
- I’m fine. While passing, the ball hit me in the kidney, and I got a spasm. My goal? There was fighting for the ball, it bounced to me, and I shot it. I wouldn’t say that I intended so, but it turned out well. As for the game, we scored an early goal and then got more relaxed, playing the ball with one or two touches. We tried to make dangerous passes, which did not always reach the player. As a result, the Portuguese launched their counterattacks. After the sending-off, we dropped back a bit. But we got the impression that the players of Braga did not know what to do at that moment, how to behave on. We are facing a meeting with Gent. We will try to beat the opponents and to retain the top spot in our group.