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  Coaches Reaction


Coaches pick up Portugal pointers rounds up all the reaction from last night's friendlies involving EURO 2004 qualifiers.
Thursday, 19 February 2004

Spain 2-1 Peru
Spain coach Iñaki Sáez: "Our passing was not up to its usual standard - perhaps it had something to do with the pitch or the ball. The most positive thing was that we knew how to respond, we will certainly be able to draw a few conclusions after what we have seen tonight." 

Portugal 1-1 England
Portugal coach Luiz Felipe Scolari: "Nobody can expect immediate results. We had some difficulties during the match, just as England did. Of course, I am not delighted with our performances so far, but I am not worried about them either." 

England manager Sven-Göran Eriksson: "It's always difficult playing against Portugal. They have a lot of pace and skill. We coped well. We were playing away from home against one of the favourites for EURO 2004 and I think we did very well. I'm rather happy with our performance." 

Greece 2-0 Bulgaria
Greece coach Otto Rehhagel: "We have shown that we are able to beat stronger teams and we will, as outsiders, attempt to do that in Portugal. It is difficult for a coach to keep his players' motivation high in friendlies. I was happy the boys were motivated enough today to keep such a positive run going." 

Bulgaria coach Plamen Markov: "We really needed a game like tonight's, against a strong team, but we still have a lot of work to do. We have plenty of time ahead to work with the players and make final plans and adjustments." 

Italy 2-2 Czech Republic
Italy coach Giovanni Trapattoni: "I think it was a good start to 2004 and it could have been even better if Christian Vieri's goal had stood. We conceded a goal from a set-piece and we have to look at that, but I think it was positive the way we tried to win the game right until the end." 

Czech Republic coach Karel Brückner: "A draw was a fair result. Italy are very difficult opponents and we should be pleased with the result. The game was played at a very high tempo in the first half although things changed in the second half because of the substitutions. I am pleased with how things turned out." 

Croatia 1-2 Germany
Croatia coach Otto Baric: "Although we lost, we played well. We had five or six good opportunities that we missed. Germany were not better than us. We played 4-4-2, an attacking formation, but it was obvious we were missing a few very important players." 

Germany coach Rudi Voller: "Croatia put us under a lot of pressure in the first 20 minutes and we were slightly lucky to survive. The result was excellent, but I must admit that we didn't play as well as we can." 

Turkey 0-1 Denmark
Denmark coach Morten Olsen: "I think this was the best first match of the year we have played in my three and a half years as national coach. We outplayed our opponents for large parts of the first half. Per Krøldrup played with an attitude that demands respect from opponents." 

Netherlands 1-0 United States
Netherlands coach Dick Advocaat: "The sharpness we had in our last match against Scotland was not there today. Against opponents like America, who play very defensively, you need to play very fast and precisely to break down their defence. That was something we did not do at all." 

Belgium 0-2 France
France coach Jacques Santini: "We decided to play the two newcomers together, and Péguy Luyindula and Louis Saha were actively involved in the first goal and the second was also scored by Saha himself. We can therefore say that both had excellent debuts." 

Albania 2-1 Sweden
Sweden co-coach Lars Lagerbäck: "We could have scored three goals before their first. We were without up to 12 regular players because of injury or illness. We played a good match but you cannot afford to miss chances at international level." 

Morocco 2-1 Switzerland
Switzerland coach Jakob Kuhn: "Morocco were strong opponents. Their players are quick and technically skilled. I'm disappointed about our game. It showed that we weren't ready physically or psychologically after such a long winter break. We committed too many errors." 

Latvia 3-1 Kazakhstan
Latvia coach Aleksandrs Starkovs: "I am satisfied with the result as much as with the performance. We looked really sound. After last year's euphoria, I was afraid there might be a drop in our commitment levels, but the players went out and gave everything once again."




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