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ON TOUR
UEFA Nations League 2020/21
Russia vs Serbia
September 3. Moscow
UEFA Nations League 2020/21
Hungary vs Russia
September 6. Budapest
International friendly
Sweden vs Russia
October 8. Solna

Cherchesov: You can't afford losing concentration at this level

Russia national football team have beaten Hungary 3-2 in UEFA Nations League match in Budapest on Sunday, the 6th of September. Coach Stanislav Cherchesov shared his thoughts at a press conference after the match:

- When the score was 3-0, it looked like Russia was going to enjoy an easy win. Did you get angry at the squad for the two goals they conceded?
- We were preparing to the match and had a desire to win from the opening minutes. Nothing changed when the score got to 3-0. Another thing is that you can’t afford losing concentration playing at this level. We did and paid for it by conceding two goals. However, we managed to take back the initiative and never let it go again. A football coach must not get after his players or get angry during a match. Rather, a coach must manage the squad’s performance which we did. Of course, we will analyse the second half in a quiet atmosphere to identify the mistakes that had been committed. We had a fine training camp and I congratulated the squad on occasion of victory. We have six points after two matches. It’s time to move forward.

- What is the difference between matches against Hungary and Serbia?
- The difference is that we conceded one goal in Moscow and two goals today. At the same time, we scored three goals in both matches. Thetwo matcheswerequitedifferent. WeplayedahomematchagainstSerbia. Serbia national team players represent Europe’s top clubs and although we knew what we wanted we did not manage at that in the opening minutes. Today we knew exactly how the home side is going to play. And we did not have any issues for the first sixty minutes but then we made all problems ourselves. I like Hungary national team. That is a young and fast moving team. We played a match against them in Budapest and won as well.

- You said in your previous comment that you did not have issues for the first 60 minutes and then you gave initiative away. Maybe it was the Hungary national team that started playing much better?
- Hungary national team coach shall better address such questions on behalf of the Hungary team.
- You can clearly hear what coaches say during volleyball matches. There is even an established practice of eavesdropping what the other side’s coach says. And you had such an opportunity today...
- We are doing our own job involving our squad and our players. But that is a good idea anyway. I should have learned Italian for this match. And will need to learn Turkish for our upcoming match against Turkey. We will work on that.

- Hungary is the second team in a row that plays with three defenders against Russia. Does this manifest any kind of special approach to Russia?
- I can’t say why Hungary chose that tactics. All coaches have their own specifics to consider before every match. So I think you better address this question to my colleagues.
- What is the reasoning behind changes made to the line-up compared to the match against Serbia?

- Kuzayev came out quite actively and helped us a lot. It would probably be difficult for Zhirkov to play two matches in a row. As for Anton Miranchuk, he stepped into the game well during the match against Serbia. And we needed some freshness in our performance today so it was no occasion that he scored. I had to substitute him because we needed to regain the initiative after conceding a goal and Gazinsky stepped in. Ionov showed a very intense performance during both matches. But we started having issues on the left side and had to introduce Karavaev who had shown a solid performance during the match against Serbia. He stepped in today and helped us cover that side. Kudryashov was yet another substitute and with him on pitch it is always easier to transform to a system with three central defenders, when necessary. We had that option in mind as well.

- Russia national team will play three matches in October. Do you plan making any changes to your preparations considering the schedule?

- I think every national team will face a similar challenge. We used to play two matches during a camp before. We were discussing this with Alexander Dyukov, the President of the Football Union of Russia and, Alexander Alayev, the General Secretary. We will have to give upcoming preparations a serious thought.



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