Head coach of Shakhtar gave an exclusive interview to shakhtar.com.
- Paulo, please assess the team’s performance and share your impression of the training camp’s first week.
- We have done a great job these days. I am very glad. The players are responsive and willing to accept our ideas. Everyone is trying to prove himself.
- What’s the team’s current fitness, according to you?
- They are getting back on track. Still, we introduced some completely new ideas, the new approach. The players are getting increasingly better each day. I think that by the first league game, they will get even stronger. Not everything’s perfect so far, but that’s normal. We have just started working. I am confident that the team will be ready by the end of the training camp.
- Have you decided who is staying?
- Yes, I already have a certain understanding of who might leave the team and who will stay. But I have not decided it 100% yet. We’ve still got at least the next game to take some decisions. As soon as I'm sure about it, the players will be the first to know that.
- Shakhtar played two friendly games. Are you happy with the players’ performance and the outcome?
- At this moment of preparation, the scoreline is not crucial. Most importantly, the guys should correctly translate into the game all the things we practise in training. I am very happy, because they try and it works. Nevertheless, it is always very important to win. It is clear that the first two opponents did not cause us any major resistance. However, the matches we are facing will be tougher. And they will help us assess the players.
- Which of the remaining friendlies do you see as the key one in terms of preparing for the season and for the Super Cup decider?
- All matches are important. The opening ones, for example, were important due to the fact that we are at the stage of familiarising ourselves with the team now. The rest will also be important, because we will encounter the theoretically stronger opponents. Every match is important in its own time. As we approach the opening game against Dynamo Kyiv, the players will need to show more than they do now. The trend is that the team must prove themselves better and better every day.