"The final will be very competitive"
Rúben Amorim previews Sporting CP's Taça da Liga final against SC Braga
Sporting Clube de Portugal face SC Braga in the Taça da Liga final this Saturday in Leiria, and coach Rúben Amorim gave his thoughts in a pre-match press conference to preview the game.
"We are two teams that know each other well, because we have already faced each other in the league", he told journalists.
"Maybe there is a difference in the centre backs SC Braga have, but the ideas that our teams possess have not changed depending on the players. The coaches have changed and the teams remain strong. It will be a very competitive game, just like the game at Alvalade".
"An early goal could transform the game completely. We can take information from the most recent game, but no more than that. It might be a completely different story", added Amorim, who talked up the late goals his team have scored recently -such as against FC Porto in the semifinal.
"The merit has to go to the players. They believe in themselves until the last moment, because the game is played until the referee blows the final whistle. We always aim to win. The credit goes to the players and to the coaching staff, who help the team to believe until the end".
Curiously enough, Amorim was the winner of the 2019/2020 Taça da Liga when coaching SC Braga. However, he says that the situation has many differentiating caveats.
"Now I'm at Sporting CP and the pressure is completely different. I have a very young group who are inexperienced in these circumstances. Experience, in this final, is not on the side of the bigger club - and this is not very normal".
"Our team is very young and has a lot of ambition to win this game. I am more concerned with my players than with me. I want them to win more than I do. They need it because they give everything until the last minute. Last year I was worried about me, with it being the beginning of my career, but now I am more concerned with my players".
Finally, the coach answered a question about Jovane Cabral and possible 'second-half players', who can come on and make an impact.
"I don't think there are second half players. I think we should always have players on the bench who can change the game. One day it could be Jovane, another day it could be somebody else", he stated. "All players want to be starters. When they have 10 or 20 minutes, they show a lot of ambition and give their all. It is a great strength of our team".