Luciano Spalletti: “We know that we made some mistakes”

Zenit`s coach analyzed the match with CSKA in short at his press conference, compared his team`s three losses this year, and commented on the second goal scored against Zhevnov.

– The first thing I`d like to note is the way the fans supported us today, the way they took part in the match, – said Luciano Spalletti. – We feel awful that we disappointed our fans, that we hurt them. As for the game itself, out opponent played very well, and focused on counter-attacks when we pushed forward. They were able to play the way they needed to play. We lost our balance in several situations, and they took advantage of that. We made a couple of mistakes in the match, and lost because of them. And as I said before, we`re really disappointed about that. But this loss shouldn`t stop us in any way. It shouldn`t stop our thoughts, which are aimed in a very specific direction. And I`m totally sure, like always, that our players will react in the right way to the result of this match.

– Do you find something in common in Zenit`s losses to Spartak, Auxerre and CSKA this year?.. Maybe something was wrong with the psychological approach of the players?

– Yes, these matches all featured a lot of pressure, and nerves. Our players definitely felt that. But you remember that we beat Auxerre in one match, and we beat CSKA this year too. We beat Sibir in Novosibirsk, while Spartak had a tie there, and so did Rubin. And I think that it`s important that each game is different. I don`t think that my players have a problem in general.

– What kind of atmosphere is there now in the locker room, what`s going on with the players and how do they feel about the match?

– They are disappointed with the result, and they don’t have much desire to talk now. We know that we made some mistakes, and we understood that. And when you play football for a long time, when you’re playing in a tournament like the Russian Premier League, you have to lose sometime. It’s important, just like in normal life, to have the right reaction to the problems you face. It’s hard to make a correct analysis of the match right now. We'll do that when we get together at our practice facility, when our emotions die down.

– Please give your view of the mistake that Zhevnov made on the second goal.

– Mistakes happen. I often ask the goalie to take goal kicks really fast, so that the opponent can't get back into position. The risk that you might make a mistake is always there. But you remember that Zhevnov made two really good saves after that. As for their competition with Malafeev, if you can call it that, Malafeev has a slight injury to his knee now. I try to look at things objectively, and will continue to do so. I might make a mistake, but I’m trying to get an overall picture of my team.

– When Zenit was trailing 0:3, the team finished the game in attack, and showed a desire to come back. Nevertheless, something was wrong with the team, as if they didn’t have the right focus…

– I think I know my team well now. We can make a mistake from one side, or we can make a different mistake and want to solve all our problems too fast. In some cases we held onto the ball too long, at other times we went ahead too much, and left ourselves open to counterattacks. But we definitely didn't underestimate the importance of the match.