Head coach of “Shakhtar” Luiz Castro at a press conference commented on the victory over “Basel” (4:1) in the quarterfinals of the Europa League:
– Mister, good evening, congratulations! How goal in the second minute fits your plans and “discovered” this game?
– Approaching the match, we in any case don’t think about on a minute we need to score: on the second, twentieth, or fiftieth. No, for us the main goal is to pass the opponent. Of course, scoring an early goal, we started to feel the game much calmer and more confident. Basel felt more insecure. But again, we don’t think about it, not assigning any particular moment. Our main goal was to defeat your opponent and pass to the semifinals of the Europa League, which we successfully achieved.
– At what point did you realize that “Basel” will not leave from defeat?
– This season was a huge number of situations where we understand that the game is not decided until the very end. The best example is the match in Zagreb, when the opponent was leading 3:1 on 90+2 minutes, and then we were able to equalise. It taught me and my players that the match does not end until the final whistle sounded the referee. I can say honestly, the more confident we started to feel when the score was 3:0. Then it became safer to think about the next game, and today it all came together.
– Next opponent – “inter”. What can you say about this team?
– At the moment, nothing concrete. Only what I see and know everything because I watch their matches. A good, strong team, very organized. And, we know, contender for the victory in the Europa League – just as we do. Our analytical division has started to study the “inter”. Tomorrow we will have more details to speak about this opponent. Later will be able to give a definite review, which will tell you about the strengths and weaknesses of this team.
– Rate the debut of Cooper. Are you satisfied with his actions in the previous match?
– Yes, I’m happy, he had an effective game. I congratulate him and the entire team!
– How do you plan in the next five days to prepare for the semifinals? Do you have Golf training in Dusseldorf? Did you discuss these points?
Yes. We live 15 minutes from the training fields. Now for us the main thing – to restore in these days of guys after the last match and prepare well to the next. There are all conditions: UEFA well organized everything, so we are calm. The time and place is.