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Photo by José Lorvão

Amorim: “We're going to throw ourselves into the game with a lot of heart, but also a cool head”

By Sporting CP
24 Nov, 2021

​The coach looks ahead to the game against Borussia Dortmund

Sporting Clube de Portugal will face Borussia Dortmund on Wednesday at the Estádio José Alvalade, on Matchday 5 of Group C of the UEFA Champions League. The team have the opportunity to guarantee a place in the Round of 16 of the competition.

Rúben Amorim, the Sporting CP coach, explained in his pre-match press conference that he was confident of getting a positive result after a good performance in the previous meeting in Germany, but asked for more from the team.

“I believe we can always do more and better. We have always said that we are in this competition to go through to the next stage, aware of the difference in experience. Borussia Dortmund were singled out as favourites in the group, but AFC Ajax did very well and are clearly the best team in the group at the moment. Nevertheless, despite Borussia Dortmund being used to decisive moments, we are going to go into  tomorrow's game to compete", he opened by saying.

“In the game in Germany we did well defensively, but offensively we have to be much better, because we need the result. It's not the case that because we were defeated in this game, I don't believe we can win. We will do our best to win the game”, he assured.

 “If we have to defend, we defend, and if we have to counterattack, then that's what we're going to do. There were stages in the game in Germany where we had the ball, but we weren't very aggressive in attack. That was the observation we made to the players this week: We can have the ball and be more aggressive when we vary our play".

As for the team that he will pick, Amorim revealed that "We have almost the entire squad available, except for Rúben Vinagre and Jovane Cabral, which gives us more solutions. I'm expecting a team prepared for every moment, knowing that we can have the ball and control things at certain times. Borussia Dortmund will definitely try to push us into our own area, but we are strong at defending”.

Amorim also played down the absences in the opposing squad, which will not be missing big names like Erling Haaland, Mats Hummels and Thorgan Hazard.

“At the beginning of the competition we had several players out injured, and I didn't pay attention to that aspect then either. We will face Borussia Dortmund, who still have players like Bellingham, Witsel, Marco Reus, Donyell Malen and Raphaël Guerreiro. They are a great team that are used to these occasions and are one point behind FC Bayern München in the Bundesliga, despite all these players who are out. They have more than enough players to change the team around when they need it. Borussia Dortmund have the capacity to win at the Alvalade, but we know that we can win too. They will always be the best Borussia, just like we are always the best Sporting CP, no matter which players play”, he considered.

In closing, the coach also stressed that Sporting CP have made progress in the Champions League.

“We grew a lot, but we were also the team that had more room to evolve. The games against Beşiktaş JK helped, as did those in the league and us bringing back certain players. The scenario is different now, and much of our attacking improvement comes from the psychological side. That's what we're going to try to do tomorrow, knowing it's a decisive game".

“We're going to throw ourselves into the game with a lot of heart, but also a cool head”.