Serhii Sapronov: "The minimum task was completed. But the main thing is that this national team has unrealized reserves"

The first round of qualifying for Euro 2024 (WU-17) ended in Duisburg, Germany, in which the girls' national team of Ukraine took third place in their group, retaining their registration in League A.

In a comment to the official UAF website, the head coach of the team, Serhii Sapronov, said whether his wards could count on more:

— Unfortunately, the lack of game practice was evident. The hostesses took advantage of this in the match of the opening round. They dictated the conditions in the support zone, found vulnerable places in our defense with precise passes. The Germans deservedly won, scoring five goals. It was only comforting that in another match of our group, Romania lost to Austria - 0:8. According to experts, it was the Romanians who were our competitors in the fight to keep their registration in the elite division. The minimum task was to overtake them, because objectively Germany and Austria looked stronger.

— So, in the second round, it was important not to lose to the Romanians and to maintain an advantage over them by additional indicators in case of equal points...

 - Exactly. However, we did not even think of playing for a draw, as they say, we did not park any buses at our gates. The girls were determined only to win. With the whistle, the referee seized the initiative, created half a dozen scoring opportunities, but the implementation failed. We had to settle for a draw - 0:0.

Photo by womensfootball.com.ua

— In order to keep the third place, it was necessary not to miss a lot from the Austrian national team in the final round, that's the only way to do it when it crushed the Germans - 3:0...

— I felt that the wards were ready to give battle to the Austrians, so there was no question of a rout. First of all, we studied the opponent's game well and, thanks to high pressing, did not allow them to combine on the approaches to our penalty area. And a reliable backup leveled another trump card of the opponents - cross-court passes. Moreover, even before the Austrians took the lead in the middle of the first half, our girls missed twice from favorable positions. Our strikers Sofya Konovalova and Anastasia Myhal were off target again. After the break, Viktoria Savkina reduced the deficit to a minimum - 1:2, and by the final whistle we were no longer behind the opponent.

— Could your wards attempt more?

— We got into a strong group, but it was an opportunity to make sure that with each round the girls add. After the competition was over, my assistants and I agreed that if there was one more participant in our group, we would definitely win because we had already gained momentum. But we have what we have. The main thing is that this national team still has unrealized reserves.

— Do you want to single out any of the wards?

— Goalkeeper Svetlana Sakhno. No complaints against her. Well done!

- What's next?

— At the beginning of December, the draw for the second round will take place, and we will learn about the next opponents in the selection of Euro-2024.

Photo by womensfootball.com.ua

Euro-2024 (WU-17). First round of selection. League A

Group 4

14.10.2023

Germany - Ukraine - 5: 0

Austria — Romania — 8:0

17.10.2023

Germany — Austria — 0:3

Romania - Ukraine - 0: 0

20.10.2023

Ukraine — Austria — 1:2 

Romania — Germany — 1:7

Standings

 

G

W

D

L

GD

P

1. Austria

3

3

0

0

13-1

9

2. Germany

3

2

0

1

12-4

6

3. Ukraine

3

0

1

2

1-7

1

4. Romania

3

0

1

2

1-15

1

League A

Group 1: Spain, Portugal, the Czech Republic, Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Group 2: Poland, Ireland, Norway, Iceland.

Group 3: France, Slovenia, Italy, Scotland.

Group 4: Germany, Romania, Austria, Ukraine.

Group 5: Switzerland, the Netherlands, Finland, Bulgaria.

Group 6: England, Belgium, Hungary, Northern Ireland.

Group 7: Sweden, Denmark, Belarus, Greece.

League B.

Group 1: Kosovo, North Macedonia, Georgia, Armenia.

Group 2: Serbia, Israel, Andorra, Latvia.

Group 3: Croatia, Luxembourg, Azerbaijan, Malta.

Group 4: Wales, Faroe Islands, Kazakhstan, Albania.

Group 5: Slovakia, Montenegro, Lithuania.

Group 6: Estonia, Turkey, Moldova.

The fourth-placed teams in League A will continue their season in the second round in League B. The seeding of the participants before the second round will depend on the places in their groups that the teams occupy in the first round. Sweden also participates in the competition, despite the direct ticket to the final part, which belongs to them as hosts.

League B teams will compete for promotion to League A in six groups. The group winners and the runner-up with the best record against the first and third-placed teams in their groups will advance to the top division.

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