Russian national team was held to a goalless draw by Sweden in UEFA Nations League match in Kaliningrad on October 11. Team coaches took questions from journalists upon completion of the match.
Stanislav Cherchesov, head coach of Russian national team:
- Dzagoev did not appear in today’s lineup, how is he doing?
- He’s doing fine as a person, but not very good as an athlete.
- Your Swedish colleague is pleased by the draw. How about you?
- We played against a well organized team tonight. We needed a goal to open up the game. We know that they play most matches in a similar manner. I said in my pre-game speech that we need to endure as our rivals would not create any free spaces. We knew that Swedes can quickly break away into offensive and you must have noticed that as well. We needed a goal to open up the game. Match events could have taken a different course then. Unfortunately, the match ended in a goalless draw. However, the atmosphere in the stadium was fantastic and we did not leave anybody indifferent. We strived for victory and were getting ready to win.
- You were very emotional during the match. What were you unhappy about?
- That happened, two or three times. I did make a couple of emotional appeals to the referee. I could he understood my Ossetian expressions well.
- What did your players lack to win?
- Sounds commonplace but we lacked a goal although we had some scoring opportunities. We should have better exploited some opportunities and perform more shots on target.
- When are the players going to go to bed tonight considering how late the match ended?
- We are having a training session here in Kaliningrad tomorrow and then leave for Sochi. We will have a late dinner tonight, then some rehabilitation and then we go to bed. The players will get up later than usual tomorrow.
- How did you like the spectators and would you like to return to Kaliningrad?
- Spectators were wonderful as they did not stop supporting us for a minute. That was an excellent atmosphere and acoustics. Unfortunately, we did not make spectators happy with goals. After the World Cup finished we decided to play a few matches in World Cup host cities to show how thankful we are to our fans. We are having a Euro qualification draw on the 2nd of December and will then decide which cities are more convenient for us to play in. I am afraid we will not have many matches away from Moscow.
- Russia is still leading the group but we failed to win. Are you pleased by the result?
- That was a match for six points. Our victory would have helped us to take the first place with only two matches left. We strived for victory but we have what we have. I am pleased by our tactical performance but this does not make much difference now. We will make our conclusions and keep striving for victory in the matches to come.
- Golovin plays for Monaco, a club which does not perform well and changed a coach lately. Was it important for Golovin to play the entire match?
- Today’s match is very important for Golovin indeed. He needed to get back to his native environment after several months in Monaco and we can see how comfortable he is in our squad. It was not our objective to let him play the entire match and this depended on the course of the game. He is tired now as he did not play many matches in such tempo lately. I think this match might help him to get back into shape. I am pleased by his performance tonight. He made some technical errors and sometimes failed at taking the best decisions. As for a coach change in Monaco, that is out of Golovin’s control.
- That was a spectacular and dynamic match. Whom can you highlight in the Russian national team squad? - We never highlight anybody personally. Football is a team play. There are indeed some details that we share with players in person and they should not hear those details from the media. Thank you for the accurate assessment of our performance.