Sergei Semak: "Thanks to the fans who came here and supported us"

The Zenit boss spoke about our last match in 2018 in Prague.
Sergei Semak: "Thanks to the fans who came here and supported us"
I think the better side won. We played carelessly, made many mistakes in our organisation of the game and in defence. Their goals changed the course of the game and we had to score at least one. There was not enough movement or quality to seriously change the outcome of the match, but the guys tried. Thanks to the fans who came here and supported us. Unfortunately, they could not make them happy.

What importance do you give to this match, considering that you've already qualified? 

There is not a disaster and yes we've already done our job. There is a bad feeling from recent defeats in the championship and we know there is a lot of work is ahead.

This is the second match in a row Magomed Ozdoyev has not been involved with. Is he injured or are you not interested in him? 

He has an injury problem, that's why he hasn't been in the squad. 

What are your plans for the team? Will everyone fly off to their holidays or will there be more training? 

From now the players are free. Some will return to St. Petersburg, someone flies off right now. They have a month to rest and recharge. In a month we will meet up in St. Petersburg and from there we fly off to the first training camp.

In the first half, Shatov played much deeper than in the match with Rubin. What was the difference between his roles? And the second question, this is your first group stage as a head coach, was there anything unexpected for you? 

No, Oleg's position was no different from the previous match. As for our attacking plans, Zabolotny and Hernani were there to help him. As for the campaign, it was clear after the draw, that the group was an even, good group. It's great that we went to the next round. We know our level and what we need to do. 

Are there any preferences for who you get? 

We'll see, we cannot influence the draw. There are some strong teams, there are some a little weaker. We will wait for the draw and start from there.

You said after each match that the group is very even. Can you say who were better Slavia, Copenhagen or Bordeaux? 

I cannot say. Bordeaux are a very good team, which did not have much luck in this group, but they played well and had a chance to get through. Copenhagen, the same, they played very well at home. Any team could have got out of the group and it is difficult to say that one team were significantly better. Us and Slavia went through. 

Zenit were almost the only Russia team to stay in European competitions, but by luck, Krasnodar also got through. Can you comment on this, given that there were more clubs last season?

The number of teams that continue on into the spring stage, shows the level and strength of the Russian championship. So now it seems lower than it was before. Of course, we are glad that another club has got through and will represent Russia. The more teams, the better for the rating, so we are always worried about our clubs.