– Seryozha Petrov told me before warm-ups that I should be ready to start the match, – said Maxim Batov. – I was totally ready to come into the match, and had a good fifteen minutes of warm-ups.
– The central halfback position is very important, and it`s quite rare that players are replaced at this position right before the start of the match. How did you do, in your opinion?
– Maybe we didn`t open up well. It was my fault, because when I came close to the outside fullbacks, like Roland Gigolaev, and Igor Cheminava, I slowed down the attack. That was in the first half, and that hurt us. Things were better in the second half, but then we didn`t have any luck.
– The team was probably expecting to play on a synthetic surface, but then right before the match it turned out that the game would take place on real grass.
– That`s exactly what happened. And I wouldn`t say that the real pitch was worse than a synthetic one. We all took cleats for both a synthetic field and natural grass, so that wasn`t a problem. It was slippery some times out there though. We had to get used to it for the first ten minutes. But that`s not why we lost. The reason was within us.