2006 FIFA World Cup Germany™

2006 FIFA World Cup Germany™

9 June - 9 July

2006 FIFA World Cup™


I expected Ukraine to play like this. It was no surprise, but despite that, we couldn't take advantage. We didn't manage to score, which would have spared us the drama of penalties. I'm not going to replay the match in my mind. We're disappointed, and I feel empty inside, and that's what keeps me from going through what happened during the match. We'll try to take some positives from this defeat and take the positive aspects from it, to help us to accept the fact that we lost.

When I sent Marco Streller on, I wanted to have a striker with fresh legs, to try something new. We missed three penalties and Alexander Frei was due up afterwards, but he could only have taken one. We wanted to prove that our young team was capable of standing on its own two feet, and we showed that. We will use the experience that we've gained here to be even better prepared for 2008. We played some good football here in Germany and our fans had a great time. In Portugal two years ago, we were playing catch-up. Here, we showed that we could hold our own in a tournament like this. In 2008, the team will have even more experience.

I don't know what to say. I don't think that anyone believed in us. Most people had written us off. They reckoned that we were just debutants. After our match with Tunisia, people were criticising our tactics. Today we proved that we could play decent football. We play for results. We have fought so hard and come so far that it's all like a dream come true for us.

We made a lot of stupid mistakes and could have let a goal in, because Switzerland played very well. They have a similar style to us. It was like playing another Ukraine. A penalty shoot-out is like Russian roulette. I'm over the moon. I didn't watch the shoot-out. I went back into the changing rooms, I just couldn't take it any more. Watching 120 minutes of a match like that was too much for me. I just said to them, 'Lads, you decide. Whoever wants to take a penalty, go for it'. (Goalkeeper Oleksandr) Shovkovskyi showed how mentally strong he was.

All of the teams who have got through to the quarter-finals are good, and the Italians are a tough team, strong at the back and dangerous on the break. It will be tough to carve out any chances against them.

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