Oleksandr Karavayev: Whoever is better prepared in a psychologically, will get the advantage in the match Ukraine - Austria

Players of the national team Oleksandr Karavayev and Serhii Sydorchuk took part in the regular press conference held today at the Ukrainian Media Center in Bucharest.

Here are the answers to Oleksandr Karavayev's questions.

- After a great first half in the match with North Macedonia after the break there was a decline. Also wondering how you would comment on the penalty episode at our goal?

- I agree, it was noticeable that in the first half we beat the opponent, we didn't allow to create anything at the gate. We went to the second half with confidence that we will be able to continue to do the same. However, we knew that Northern Macedonia would create pressure, we were ready for that. But, perhaps, there was a certain loss of concentration, the pressure from the opponents affected somewhere, and we started to play differently than in the first half.

In the episode with penalty, I saw that I could kick out the ball after Bushchan's save, but the striker was ahead of me. In general, this episode is 50 to 50, the opponent also played dangerously. The referee decided it was a penalty, it was his decision…

- How can you assess the conditions in which you have to train in Bucharest, if you compare them with those in Ukraine? Did your family visit you during the Euro?

- We work at a sports base, live in a hotel. We go to the stadium for training, everything corresponds to a high level, everything suits us. The hotel has the conditions for recovery, we train in good quality fields.

My relatives did not come to Romania, but friends and acquaintances came, they asked for help with tickets to the match. We feel the support of loved ones.

- What do fans post to you on social networks?

- There is a lot of support for our team on the Internet, many people send messages and watch matches.

- Do you consider the national team of Ukraine the favorite in the match with Austria?  

- I would not say that we are the favorites in this match. Both teams need to win, it's hard to talk about it now. Physically and tactically, both teams are well prepared, so who is better prepared in a psychological, emotional sense, he will get the advantage.

Austria has individually strong players, all players are very powerful, good at challenges.

- Did Mircea Lucescu bring good luck to the national team of Ukraine, because he was on the podium during the match with Northern Macedonia?

- We knew that Mircea Lucescu would be in the stands during yesterday's match. He will also visit our next match, with Austria. He promised us support from the first day we arrived in Romania.

- How do you like the atmosphere in Bucharest and the Romanian weather?

- The atmosphere is great, in terms of weather - maybe it's better that it often rains. If the sun was constantly shining, it would be much harder for us. Rain adds freshness.

- The national team of Ukraine often makes fans worry, losing their advantage in the course of the match…

- We will work on psychology. The coaching staff constantly reminds us that we need to be 100 percent focused. We will work to ensure that this does not happen again in the next game.

- Can you remember the circumstances under which you watched the match Ukraine - Sweden at Euro 2012, when the blue-and -yellows last won the European Championship game until yesterday?

- I remember, I had a vacation, I was in Kherson. I watched that match on TV with my parents, was happy with the goals and victory, jumped to ceiling like a fan.

- How will you deal with the excitement in the match against Austria?

- Even in the game with North Macedonia it was noticeable that the boys fire in the eyes, there was a great desire to win, as shown by the first half. Perhaps the second half showed that we were not ready enough to press the opponent, although after the break we created a lot of moments. If we had scored, everything would have turned out differently.

In such matches, if you give your opponent the feeling that they can do something, it means a lot. But we performed the game plan of the coach, as evidenced by the moments we created.

- What was the mood of Andriy Shevchenko after the game with North Macedonia?

- Our head coach had a positive mood, he congratulated us on the victory. Although some sediment still remained, because he wanted us to spend the second half as well as the first. But in general he was satisfied, because we followed his instructions for the game.

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