Marcelino Garcia Toral oversaw his first win over Sevilla FC in his professional managerial career on Saturday afternoon, and arrived in his post-match press conference in brilliant spirits. He was very happy with his players, who secured themselves a fantastic victory in Andalusia.
How do you weigh up this win at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan?
“The win is very important, we played against our main rival for the Champions League and we now leave knowing that Sevilla FC need to take 12 points more than us. This is a situation that we would have gone for. We are proud, we need to stay humble and respect our opponents and see if we can take enough points to finish fourth in LaLiga.”
Valencia CF had to play a very serious game to win…
“We had to struggle through, above all to open the scoring to put ourselves ahead and at the start of the second half, but we kept a clean sheet. With the second goal from Rodrigo, even if he didn’t secure the win there and then, he put us on the right track, because until the referee blew his whistle it wasn’t over. We have competed at a high level, I am proud of my players and the fans.”
Since 2004, Valencia CF hadn’t won here, is this the most important win of the season?
“In order for this to be important, there have had to have been a lot of other important wins beforehand. We came into this game with an eight-point gap over Sevilla FC, which is a considerable gap. Our opponent needed this more than we did, and with this game we had a chance to put ourselves in a really good position and we are very happy. We are pleased that Valencia have won here, some 14 years later, that speaks volumes of this group.”
Do they deserve to be in the Champions League?
“I will believe in things when they become reality, now it is a big possibility but nothing is for certain. When the fifth-placed team mathematically cannot catch us, then we will consider ourselves a Champions League team, to win games in LaLiga it requires a lot of effort and concentration and to play at a high level. We don’t have the abilities of Real Madrid or FC Barcelona, who win when they aren’t at 100%. We have to be humble, measured and know that there are 10 games left.”
Kondogbia was substituted due to an injury problem, what was it?
“We will have to evaluate it. At first he had a minor problem with his left hamstring, he doesn’t think that it is serious, but there will be some tests in the coming days and we hope it won’t be long. Since he has come back, he has been playing at a very high level.”
Gaya also had to be taken off with physical complaints…
“Yes, he had a problem that wasn’t in the same area that he was struggling with during the week, maybe due to protecting this problem. He has a problem with his other leg.”
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