Match № 2

The match № 2 (group stage), first tournament day


January 16th, 2015, St. Petersburg, Peterburgsky SCC, 300 spectators

Referees: Ivan Saraev, Kirill Bolshakov, Roman Miluchenko

Estonia: Ignonen, Paju, Vihmann, Avilov, Aloe (Magi, 76), Tekko, Kirss (Saarts, 58), Kauber (Sobtsenko, 58), Marin (Paur, 68), Sappinen (c) (Peetson, 58), Gussev (Suurpere, 68)

Head coach: Martin Reim

Finland: Virtanen, Hatakka, Vaisanen (c), Kabashi (Hovi, 58), Yaghoubi, Skrabb, Aallikko (Lassas, 58), Voutilainen, Anyamele, Ojala, Rahimi (Tuominen, 65)

Head coach: Tommi Kautonen

Goals: Sappinen (51), Hatakka (54, 90)

Best players: Tauno Tekko, Moshtagh Yaghoubi

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After match comments

Head coach of team Estonia Martin Reim:

– Our game messed by some reasons after the goal we let in. Substitutions didn't give us what we expected also. We played first half good enough and we wanted to improve it with substitutions. But we failed. Besides, we just gathered and spent only one training yesterday. In this case the result is not so important. We must play better than today.

– What exactly was broken in your game, why couldn't you hold the leading score? And why the substitutions didn't work?

– Unfortunately, our substitutions spoiled the game. Guys couldn't come to the game. Too many fights were lost, too many wrong passes were done and the result – many sharp moments on our side. But we needed to change players. We have to look through all the players and do not let the start lineup to lose all strengths at the very beginning of the tournament.

– You have let in the goal soon after you had scored. And by the end of the match you failed to keep the draw. Are your players ready for such psychological blows, won't they give up?

– I think they are adults already. Though the match has showed the different thing. After the goal we gave the initiative to the opponent and couldn't come back again. It is very offensive to let in the goals from free kicks when the ball is jumping and the ricochet is unpredictable.

Head coach of team Finland Tommi Kautonen:

– The first game, it is pleasant to start tournament with the victory. I'm very happy and satisfied with the match. It is important for us to start tournaments and competitions this certain way. It is a preparation stage for us before the European qualification. We are checking the readiness of our players that is what we need to move forward.

– What is the position of Jari Litmanen in your staff?

– I will be very glad to see him in my team, but he is a bit old for this. (laughing). He works with midfielders and forwards of our team, he knows about it much more than anyone else. His opinion is very important for us. He is an advisor for our staff, all of us and he is the part of united team.

– For many years national teams of Finland made us to get used to their defensive style of football. But as we saw on Granatkin Memorial and today Finnish team tends to play more offensive football...

– We do not tend either to attack or to defense. We try to keep football harmony. Our main task is to grow up players for the main national team, who can transfer from U-17 step by step to the top-level players. The same work we do on this tournament. But we have to play more open football to improve our players.

– You chose Yakhoubi to be the best player of the match. Still, Hatakka double scored. Why so?

– If see it general, the midfielder was more useful. Football is not only about scoring. So I marked a player with a good distance passes, the one who won battles for the ball. That was very important to win. Football is a 90 minutes game, we need to analyze and estimate players along the whole game, nor for scoring.

– We already asked about Jari Litmanen. We want to ask a question that is probably usually asked to head coaches of youth teams of Finland: do you see a future Litmanen there?

– Unfortunately, I don't.


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