Sérgio Conceição talked of the mistakes the team made after the defeat against Liverpool
After the defeat against Liverpool (5-1), Sérgio Conceição was clear in stating he is the “main responsible” for this match that will have to be “remembered in the future”. The blue and white coach stated that the setbacks were “decisive” in the strategy for the match, but criticized the lack of aggressiveness of the team in the match, something that is not acceptable in his time at FC Porto: “We can’t make just nine fouls, because we didn’t have 80% of ball possession. Facing a vertical and incisive team like this, we lost the ball in areas where that can’t happen, it was terrible”. Finally, Sérgio Conceição admitted he will “look at what went wrong” to correct the mistakes for the next match and admitted: “We have to see what the best is for the future of FC Porto”.
The setbacks before and at the start of the match
“First of all, I have to take the blame for this heavy defeat, as I’m the coach and I’m the main responsible for this. It was a match to remember in the future. There were also some decisive setbacks. Pepe was feeling well in the warm-up, he had a problem on his torso rather than on his legs, but we had to change, and Fábio Cardoso didn’t have any play time yet; Pepe would have given a different approach to the match, but there was no time, we had to go in with what was planned with Pepe. Shortly after, Otávio picked up an injury and our balance in the midfield was negatively affected by that. Liverpool’s first shot, 17 minutes in, was a goal, but all five goals felt like they were calmly training and I’m the one responsible for that.”
The lack of aggressiveness of the team
“We can’t make just nine fouls, because we didn’t have 80% ball possession. Facing a vertical and incisive team like this, we lost the ball in areas where that can’t happen, it was terrible, and I admit I passed them the wrong message. Playing like this in the Champions League, you have to wonder if the players want to face the coach that they have.”
The power of the opponent
“Liverpool is a balanced team, aggressive, pressing, they define those important moments well, when the opponent is exposed. The forwards and the midfielders get in the finishing zone superbly, and they took advantage of it, but we were the ones who made a lot of mistakes.”
The future after the European defeat
“We will look at what went wrong, talk to the President to see if the players are willing to hear the message and do what we have been doing so far. The members don’t need my excuses, they need to know if my message gets through. We have to see what the best is for the future of FC Porto. There are things that are not acceptable for me as a coach and today, things that are basic to winning matches and that we always did in all the years I’ve been here, we failed to do them and it was terrible.”
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