Amorim: "We remain confident"
A setback against FC Famalicão will not dampen Sporting CP's spirits, believes the coach
Rúben Amorim reacted to the 1-1 draw with FC Famalicão at the Estádio José Alvalade in his post-match press conference on Sunday night, analysing the performance by his side.
"We started the game playing very hastily. Then we settled down, created opportunities and scored our goal. We conceded the equaliser straight afterwards, which took some of the confidence out of the team", said the Sporting CP coach. "We finished the first half well, and in the second half we had several opportunities. We didn't score, however, and we were punished for that", he added.
Amorim would refuse to blame the draw on the officiating by referee Rui Costa and his assistants, despite several penalty appeals being waved away. "We could have won the game. We have a good league here and good things to talk about. We have a league full of artists. We know that and we have to give merit to the players", he remarked, although he admitted that he did not agree with the sending off he received after the final whistle. "It was the lineman who sent me off. I wasn't talking to the referee at the time", he said.
The season is heading into its final stages and Sporting CP remain in the driving seat, although he admits that "it will not be easy for anyone - either Sporting CP or other teams." "We focus on things game by game, and we don't think about the title. We are very confident. We played well against Moreirense FC and we should have won there. Today was more of the same: FC Famalicão had two shots. That's football."
"We have to think about SC Farense now. I have a lot of confidence in my players. Today we had a lot of shots and we didn't score from them. Last week we missed out on scoring by two centimetres. We are ok, we are confident and we knew that this was a possibility."
"This remains Sporting CP's best ever run of results, with a lot of young players in our squad."
Amorim was asked about Pedro Gonçalves' position in the game, and explained that 'Pote' "is a central midfielder," and thus his move from the wing to the middle of the park should not come as a surprise to anyone. "We thought that he would be more effective there and it is clearly his position. He doesn't score as many goals in that role, but he has more fun playing."
As for his decision to bring in Daniel Bragança, Matheus Reis and Eduardo Quaresma for João Palhinha, Zouhair Feddal and Luís Neto, respectively, the coach said: "When he is on a yellow card, it is sometimes not worth risking Palhinha, because he is a very aggressive player. His game came to an end with the first move, and he began to be more tentative. Feddal had a difficult week, and didn't train much, but he's a Lion. We wanted to bring in Matheus, who is faster. We also have to highlight [Eduardo] Quaresma, who is coming back from injury."
"We have a six-point advantage. If we win our next game, we will maintain our position. That is the focus," stated the Sporting CP boss. "We are paying the price in a way for the success we had before, and we have to put that in perspective. Sporting CP are a big club fighting for trophies, but we know where we started out from and where we want to go. We want to win against SC Farense."