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Photo by José Lorvão

Amorim: "We are on the right path"

By Sporting CP
16 Feb, 2024

The coach reacts to the 1-3 win over BSC Young Boys

After the 1-3 home win against Swiss side BSC Young Boys, which put Sporting Clube de Portugal in a positive position in the playoff to reach the Round of 16 of the UEFA Europa League, coach Rúben Amorim expressed his happiness with the performance of his players, only regretting the fact that the team did not score more goals.

“We knew it was going to be a tough game, with a lot of duels and against players strong in one-on-ones close to the area. We started very well, but we always missed the final pass and that is something we have to improve. Antonio [Adán] kept us in it with two great saves and there were a lot of transitions in the first half. We scored the first goal and then the second, but we can't concede to make it 1-2 on the very next move,” the coach began by saying at his press conference.

“We rectified some things at halftime, but what helped a lot was the third goal, because it broke BSC Young Boys down a little, gave us confidence and then we managed the scoreline until the end. We could and should have scored more goals, especially in the second half, as the tie is only halfway through and is very dangerous. The opposition had their chances, but they will be even more courageous in Alvalade to try to turn things around. We have to be prepared for that.”

The coach was then asked why he substituted Viktor Gyökeres in the 73rd minute, in a game in which the Swede was constantly found by his teammates and made numerous runs.

“I wasn't worried at all about his physical capacity, especially because he tracks back slower than the others and we balance that as a team. He came off to manage the game, and in the last 15 minutes there was going to be even more space. The way he looked at his number in amazement [at the time of his departure] is not the look of a player who is tired. Obviously he is very hungry and wants to score a lot of goals, but he will have a lot of games to do that.”

With this result, Sporting CP now have 11 victories in the last 12 games, in addition to 19 goals scored and only one conceded in their last four. But Amorim does not want to relax, and is focusing on Monday's game with Moreirense FC.

“As we won, we will go to  Moreira de Cónegos happy and all the players will feel important because they know they can play. This helps us to prepare for the next game, but now we have to study Moreirense FC and we will be prepared. We know we can't drop points in the league and sometimes the mind is more important than the body. As for the 19 goals scored and one conceded, these are numbers that can change from one moment to the next, as we can lose confidence by dropping points, so we want to maintain this winning streak. This game only helped us confirm that we are on the right path,” highlighted the coach.

In closing, Amorim also made a point of praising the enormous support of the thousands of Sportinguistas who were at the Wankdorf Stadium.

“We started hearing them from when we were at the hotel, it wasn’t even during the warmup. The players are confident and believe in what we are doing, but they also know that there is a way to go and we need their help. We are still only halfway through the tie,” he concluded.