FC Dynamo Brest’s Head Coach Vladimir Zhuravel summarized the home game against BATE, which ended in 1:1 draw.
- I would like to put focus on the official start of the League and how the evening was held. I saw such an evening for the first time for long years. We wanted to correspond this festival on the stadium, but the game ran not like the Cup one.
There were no early goals, both BATE and we played from the defense and nobody wanted to concede a goal. From the other side – the goal was needed. It could blow up the game. And it did. I think, there were few goal scoring moments, the teams realized almost everything what they created. The result is fair. The last five minutes of the game became the raisin. We need to single out Denis Polyakov. You haven’t won a single game in the League so far. Do you feel nervous?
- We definitely want to win. From the other side, we don’t lose as well, but we need the win, the three points. We are not nervous, the season is long, but the start is important as well. Despite the fact that we have tough opponents and two away games, we need to win and take three points.
You have signed Kirilenko as a first team player, but he doesn’t play. Why?
- It’s only two weeks since he arrived, he is the youngest player of our team. He trains with the first team, and played for reserves of Friday. We have strong first team competition, I have mentioned it above. It’s really hard even to get into first 18. I am sure, Kirilenko’s time is ahead.
There were three draws with different scenarios. Which one is the most regretful?
- I think, the two Minsk games against Krumkachy and FC Minsk.
You’ve chosen almost the same squad as for the Cup game against BATE. Two different games and different approaches. Why have you chosen precisely this squad? Did you plan to play in different way?
- We need to realize that BATE is a very strong team. In order to achieve positive result, and even streak of results, as we have another Cup game, we need to use those footballers, who are the best here and now. We have no time for experiments. The responsibility for result is high. That’s why I have chosen eleven best-fitted players who showed their best during the training week. It’s easy. We have some problems. Ivanov missed the week because of flu. Vitus missed two days for the same reason. Bukatkin was absent. We have young guys and foreign players, who have their own first team competition because of the limit. Therefore, we have named best eleven for today.
As for the strategy… We have analyzed the Cup game, but BATE did the same. Today they started with three central defenders, more cautious. They have their own problems. Rodionov and Ivanic added creativeness, there were some changes in the defense. I think, there were no experiments from their side. You never know how the game will go before the start. The very first minutes normally show, what corrections are needed during the break. We had a number of variants, including switching to 4-3-3 formation and with two strikers. However, there was no need in it.
Could you have predicted the final result after the starting minutes of the match?
- It was obvious that the team who score first, would have more chances to win. Very first minutes of the game didn’t give necessary information. I could shout on near flank, but in the far one it was more difficult. We should regroup a bit, mark, close down a bit in another way. Some time was spent for these amendments. But I need to repeat myself, that was a cautious game. BATE controlled the ball in the midfield, we did it more in defense, but there were few chances. The value of the goal was too high.
Would you prefer to play second tie of the Cup against demoralized or angry BATE?
- Of course, if you meet after two wins in a row, you will have some psychological advantage. However, I won’t say that the win and the draw sent us to a crushed mood. There was a festival in any way, I mean the atmosphere on the stands and fans’ support. Now the lads need to cool down in the dressing room, they are disappointed with the result. Later on, we definitely find some positives. I think, this match was a positive one.
You haven’t used your third substitution today. Why?
- Right before the sending off, we planned to throw in Kouyate as the second striker. Nevertheless, we didn’t do it, we saved the precious time. I thought the substitution would have made harm to us.
Could Roman Vasilyuk come on the field instead of Kouyate?
- Yes, he could, but Kouyate is our strongest and biggest man. Their side had field player in the goal, so we asked to concentrate on high balls. Kouyate would have helped better in such a game. We could have taken off one defender, but we decided to ask Legchilin to come further, there was a direct football already. We just needed to reach the goal and shoot. We had the shots in the last minutes of the game, but Denis Polyakov made great saves. It happens.
Have you planned Vitus’s substitution?
- No, Vitus missed two games because of leg injury. Later on, he missed two days because of flu. I was worried about his physical conditions. He felt during the break that he could not use his left foot in full, there was a knock. In the second half, he asked to be substituted.
How would you rate Lebedev’s play?
- A hard start. He is upset, takes the mistake to his account. Although, I disagree, there was a mistake of the whole team. Nevertheless, the goal was scored after bad passing. He is mentally strong lad and we support him. Life goes on.