The first qualifying matches of the Euro 2016 Qualifiers revealed some shocking results and good surprises to pay a close eye on for the next roundup in October.
Portugal 0-1 Albania – The best performance ever for Albania football costs Portugal head coach – Paulo Bento – his spot. He resigned today September 11th. We would not be missed judging his results starting in Brazil..
Czech Republic 2-1 Netherlands – a few days after the US won in Prague, the Czech started off their Euro 2016 qualifying campaign with a stunner against the Dutch, recent World Cup bronze medalist.
Arsenal and Czech Republic midfielder – Tomás Rosický:
“Obviously we’re delighted with the result. Holland have a great team, for us it was a great night. We knew that they have great players with technical ability; we cannot match them in that”.
We tried to sit deep in defence, keep a good shape and play a tactical game. We did very well and worked hard for it. We were maybe a bit lucky that they made a big mistake at the end, but as a team we worked very hard and it is a great reward for us.
Manchester United and Netherlands forward Robin van Persie,
“When you lose a match that late, it is very disappointing. After the equaliser we had things under control and created some chances to make it 2-1. A draw also was not such a bad result after all, but when you then lose like this, it is an extra blow, especially looking at the way the goal was scored”.
Bosnia-Herzegovina 1-2 Cyprus – Brazil World Cup participant defeated at home by 140th country in FIFA ranking
Charalampos Christodoulou, Cyprus coach
“Whatever I say about the players and their performance will be too little. The boys have been doing themselves an injustice all this time. Whatever happens in our group, we remain outsiders. We will see what happens game by game. We played a tough team in a hostile venue, but the players were not affected despite going behind. We created chances to score even more goals. Bosnia also had their opportunities and we needed some luck, but we deserved the three points”.
Manchester City player, Bosnia and Herzegovina captain Edin Džeko,
“We started well, scored at the right time and had several opportunities to get another, but it didn’t work. We conceded both goals easily, and after that nothing was going right.
We hit the post, we didn’t score the penalty. This was obviously not our day. In the second half we didn’t play well at all. We were all on one side of the pitch and couldn’t organize ourselves. We were hoping to win and this defeat made things a bit harder for us – we have three tough matches ahead of us”.
Iceland 3-0 Turkey
Lars Lagerbäck, Iceland coach
“I think we had a really, really good game. I am impressed by the players, we prepared the whole week and the first half was maybe one of the best halves since I came to the team. Then in the second half we controlled it well and were very effective, and I am very satisfied with the players”.
The most important thing when you play with an individually skilful team like Turkey is that we keep the team together when we defend and be well-organised and do not lose out in one-on-one situations. I only remember they had one real goalscoring chance. So that is the best thing you can say about the players – it was really, really good”.
Fatih Terim, Turkey Coach
Iceland played better than us and we have to congratulate them. We have to be realistic, we deserved the defeat. Reduced to ten men while you are already 1-0 down, is not an easy thing to overcome”.
“The Czech Republic beat Netherlands: their and Iceland’s wins were both unexpected. But we have to be prepared for this, such things may happen again in our group”.
“Due to tonight’s results, our match against Czech Republic is much more important now. We have quality players but only the ones who can justify a performance at this level will stay with us. Because this is the level I am talking about. I don’t want to name any of them but some players really made me disappointed tonight”.