O L Y M P I A C O S   1 9 2 5
O L Y M P I A C O S   1 9 2 5
Pre-match Press Conference against Osmanlispor

Pre-match Press Conference against Osmanlispor

Please read below quotes from our club’s head coach, Mr Paulo Bento, and Panagiotis Retsos on the eve of our side’s match against Osmanlispor.

Paulo Bento

-On the side’s state ahead of tomorrow’s match and on the availability of injured players: “Out of the injured players, Tarik (note: Elyonoussi) and Ideye will not be available and have been left out of the list. Apart from that, the team is fine. Following our Saturday’s match, we have had an additional day to get some rest and prepare this match. Players are ready to do what the club asks from them and fight for a positive result, namely to win”.

-On Olympiacos’ good display in recent fixtures and on whether the Osmanlispor comes at the right moment: “Winning always produces a boost of self-confidence; it’s good we have a winning streak. However, wins are to be analyzed, so that we identify what we did right and what our mistakes were to be corrected. The team is well poised. Results in the league are good, our Greek Cup campaign is still on and, in Europe, we made it through a well0-balanced group and currently we are called to face a tough opponent in order to qualify”.

-On the fact that Olympiacos has been knocked out by –on paper- weaker sides in all 3 times the side had had a Europa League tie following its Champions League round-stage disqualification and whether this is a mindset issue: “No, I didn’t have this in mind. What I am thinking of is the things I have to do tomorrow. I studies our opponent’s strengths and weaknesses to exploit. As per your question, this thing was never a concern of mine. Firstly, let’s stick to the fact that being the favorite doesn’t guarantee winning the match. We have to be modest in order to win. We have to see the things we did well in the past and repeat them and identify our mistakes in order not to”.

-On the fact that Osmanlispor seems to have had a shaky start in 2017 and whether having Panagiotis Retsos next to him in this Press Conference means that he or some other young player will feature in the starting line-up: “As per your first question, all teams go through various phases. This is none of our business. We won’t be concerned with that and their state. The only thing that matters for us is to exploit their weaknesses. Like all teams, they have their strengths and weaknesses. It’s a club that finished top of the table in the group stage leaving Villareal in second place. This means they have some really strong qualities. So, we will not rely on the state they are into. Our sole concern is tomorrow’s match and to do our job right.. Of course, you might see Retsos and another guy coming from Olympiacos Academy playing tomorrow. You might also see other young players being capped.

-On the importance of the atmosphere created by the fans for the players: Of course, our fans attendance is always a positive thing, it helps us and we need it to become stronger. Playing in a packed stadium will certainly be helpful, since it makes players believing more in their efforts. We want our fans by our side especially in those moments of difficulty. This is when we need them the most, and we need them by our side throughout the 90 minutes of the match”.

-On the fact that Osmanlispor has scored in all its European fixtures and whether the teams worked on that in order to avoid conceding any goals: Indeed, we will face a team that usually scores in all its matches. They have some really sharp an experienced players, attacking swiftly from the wings. They are players who can give you a hard time and may hurt you since they have scored in all their matches. We want to rule the pitch and contain them from hitting in counter-attack. We will try to do so using our own strengths and their weaknesses. By talking of winning the match, it goes without saying that the ideal thing would be to keep a clean sheet at the same time. However, our primary objective is to win. If we can do it without conceding any goals and keep it like that for the return match at Osmanlispor’s home grounds, this would be ideal”.

Panagiotis Retsos

-On the fact that Osmanlispor may not be the most commercially attractive club and their results have been telling of how dangerous they might be: “Hello. This is a very important match for the club. Since they made it to the round of 32, this means they are an important team. We have to be careful and keep a clean sheet. We will have our fans by our side and I believe we can achieve many things”

-On Osmanlispor’s bad start in 2017 and whether this makes things easier for Olympiacos: “I don’t think so. I believe this match is different and we are looking forward to it. It will be a particular match. They are a good team like we. We play at home and I think we can make it”.

-On the fact he had played in various positions this year and that tomorrow he may have to start the match as a midfielder: In my age, what matters is to play football. It is important for a player to be able and perform in various positions. I started this way and I intend to keep on doing so; I will play wherever my coach asks me to. My coaches and teammates help me a lot to give 110% of myself. Being capped tomorrow by my coach will mean the world for me. Having said that, if all players give their 100%, the side will progress”.

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