Sergei Semak: “We’re going to work on our mistakes, there is no other way”

The Zenit manager’s words on the match against Orenburg.

Sergei Semak: “We’re going to work on our mistakes, there is no other way”

“We were able to score a quick goal, but the opponent’s shots lead to three conceded goals. They took the lead while we couldn’t score anymore, if we did, we would’ve been able to make a comeback. We could’ve changed the result, but in order to do that we had to score at least one goal. There were many chances, the players tried their best and created a lot of them. The second half was a bit better, but unfortunately it was lacking goals. Therefore this game didn’t go well for us. We’re going to analyze our actions and the moments that lead to conceded goals and work on them. It is unpleasant, but there is nothing we can do. We’re going to work on our mistakes, there is no other way.”

When do you think was the moment that lead to this defeat?

“It’s difficult to say which moment it was. The third goal allowed Orenburg to play more open. We also had chances, for example Wendel could’ve scored, but we had our moments before and after that too. Any of our goals would’ve given us an opportunity to make a comeback and hope that it was possible to win today. The players did everything they could in terms of performance, they were creating chances, but we weren’t accurate enough to come back home with points today.”

What is the reason behind these two defeats that happened back to back?

“The reason is the result, we concede more and score less than our opponents. I don’t think our performance is worse, but the result is. It is football, the team that scores more wins, not the one that plays better.”

If Krasnodar win in this round, you’re going to be seven points behind, and if Dynamo and Spartak win, you can end up in sixth place. Is there any tension inside the team because of that?

“Nobody is happy about it and obviously nobody likes to lose. We’re trying our best and working hard. The situation is difficult for us right now. We have to play and win, not look at the standings. There are many matches ahead and the table is still going to change a lot.”

Claudinho was substituted on the 78th minute and he didn’t seem happy about it. Why did you change him? In my opinion he was one of the best players in the squad today.

“His reaction to the substitution was normal, he shook everyone’s hands, there are no issues. We wanted to strengthen our attack, so we sent Erokhin on as there were many passes. Aleksandr has a skill to come on and score. Claudinho had many chances, but at the end he got a bit tired and started making mistakes that are unusual for him. That’s why we decided to make this change and send another player on.”

Mário Fernandes was substituted in the first minutes. What happened, was it an injury?

“Unfortunately it was. I think he twisted his ankle. It’s difficult to switch pitches, and getting injured playing on the artificial grass is not a rare case.”

Sutormin came on instead of Mário, but you substituted him in halftime. What was the reason, just a tactical change or was there something else that led to this decision?

“It was a tactical change, we switched to four defenders, and with this formation it would’ve been difficult for Aleksey to play on the position of a right-back because Orenburg have quite fast players. Even in the first half there were moments when he was losing to them in terms of speed, so we decided to change the formation because we had to score.”

Are the fans on the stands important for the way the match goes? Why did they stop traveling to support the team? It was a special day for Orenburg before.

“The attendance rate in Orenburg was very low for the match, even without our supporters. Maybe the reason for it was the kickoff time, or maybe people aren’t that interested in coming to the stadium. Regarding our fans, a lot of people say that it’s not the same without them. Without a doubt we miss them, but it is what it is.”