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I saw all players in action

Tuesday, November 21, 2023



Shakhtar head coach Marino Pusic commented on the control game against Rukh and talked about the preparation for the upcoming competitive matches

– Mister, Shakhtar held a friendly vs Rukh. What can you say about this game?
– First of all, it was important for me to play this match because I wanted to see other players in action to have a better picture of their capabilities. Secondly, most footballers need practice and playing time. A game is a game: it was difficult, there were many fouls, but that's part of it. We have to adapt. I think we had many good as well as bad moments. We shouldn't concede three goals at this level. But, unfortunately, it happened, so we have to learn from mistakes. Most of the footballers who entered the field did not play much during the season, so they were out of a certain playing rhythm. I do not blame anyone at all, these are learning moments. I liked the energy of the team. The boys did their best, worked hard, but it turned out that it was not enough to win It was a very important game for us, we saw a lot of things. We tried to put a lot of energy.

– What are the main reasons for the defeat?
– We gave the opponents two goals as a present, very simple. Of course, these are mistakes, but we win and lose together. Rudko is a great goalkeeper, a nice person. He tried to adhere to all the principles that we want to see in the build-up. Of course, sometimes you have to make a choice, to play through short or long passes, but we learn from it. I saw that the team worked hard, tried to implement our principles with and without the ball to gain maximum result. I'm glad we played this game. I must say that the opponents had some moments, especially in the first half, when we acted very openly. However, we also created chances in the second half and maybe in the first one, such as the episode with Shved. However, the match should not be analysed from this point of view: it is important for me to see footballers playing to get a better of picture their capabilities. That's all. It's not about the result. Of course, when we take the field, we want to win, but for me the most important thing was to see the players to know what I can count on and what I need to work on.

– What is the current training schedule? What have you been doing these past few days?
– We continue to train every day. On Tuesday, the internationals will return, the squad that played against Rukh will hold a recovery session. On Wednesday, we will all gather together and start preparing for the next match.

– You saw the players of the youth team. What can you say about their qualities and potential?
– I can't say much as it was a very short period. I gave the opportunity to play to three of them. It is clear that they want to play, compete, like every young footballer, there is potential for progress. They should work hard to improve. They are talented, sometimes they will train with us.

– Eguinaldo was injured in the match against Rukh. What is his current health condition? You were seen on the field trying to stand up for him.
– Yes, because it was a very unpleasant foul – from behind, without the intention to touch the ball. This is very dangerous. In my opinion, there should have been a red card. That case was not the first one, there were many such cases. I didn't like it, we lost one player because of that kick from the back. I wanted to tell the referee that this is not the way to lead the game. Eguinaldo is injured and out. We don't know for how long.

– The match against Polissia is ahead. What can you say about the opponents and what preparation schedule will the team have?
– I already spoke about the schedule: we are going to train all together on Wednesday and Thursday when everyone is back. We will work on tactics for this game. What can I say about the opponents? They are a good team, they are also competing for top spots in the table. It will be a tough match.