Reuters Soccer Blog
World Soccer views and news
The tournament’s most verbose coach was in at the top of his game in the run-up to the match against Brazil, baffling the world’s media with his long-winded answers to the simplest of questions and brilliantly using the double negative on at least one occasion. Here are some excerpts from what was billed as a news conference but sounded more like a lecture in philosophy.
How important is the absence of your two central defenders? “I cannot not know the performance they have produced in the World Cup and, in addition to the way they are playing at the moment, they are valuable players but I believe we are capable of opting for their team mates who will resolve their absence with reliability and competence, you come to a World Cup with a number of options for each position, and the objective of this is that other options will appear and in the match against Brazil we will try to verify whether we have done this job correctly as this is one of the objectives of a team which competes in a tournament of this magnitude.” (and, yes, that was all one sentence)
You’ve lost your last seven matches against Brazil. Does this worry you?
“The psychological aspect is always important in a championship but the fact which you are harbouring, from our point of view acts, acts as a stimulus, it’s an opportunity to reverse a situation which is based on negative precedents…..it’s not that, because you lost in the past, you enter the field in a depressed mood for having lost previous matches. Previous matches are precedents which you can never ignore, you value and you respect the achievements of your opponents, in the case of Brazil even more so because of the dimension of their footballing history, but, in a humble way, we aspire to finding a small space for ourselves.”