Köln v BATE. Europa League. Pre-match press conference


Köln v BATE. Europa League. Pre-match press conference

FC BATE coach Alexander Ermakovich said November 1 his team will play for a "positive result" against FC Köln in the Europa League at RheinEnergieStadion. He said this during a press conference ahead of the November 2 match of the Europa League.

"We respect the rivals, we understand Köln’s strength, but we are not afraid. It was hard for us in the first match and it will be even harder here, but we played in similar stadiums and feel comfortable in such conditions," Ermakovich said. 

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According to Ermakovich, it does not matter that Köln is currently last in the Bundesliga.

"The Bundesliga is the top championship, with the best attendance in Europe. We already felt the strength of the opponent back in Borisov," underlined the Belarusian manager and former BATE player.

Nevertheless, he is convinced that, like in the home match on October 19, BATE will have chances to score.

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"The victory two weeks ago gives us additional confidence. We are getting ready for a hard battle, but I believe in our guys," Ermakovich said.

At the same time, he admitted that the home championship draw against outsiders Naftan in the last match "was a psychological blow, though a positive one" (BATE's chances for the title fell sharply).

"But the Europa League is a completely different tournament. We have already switched and are thinking about tomorrow's game," said the coach.

"All factors will be important in the game against Köln. But the main thing is what is in the mind of the players, so psychology will be the most important factor," he said.

According to the defender Alexei Rios, who scored the only goal in the first leg in Borisov two weeks ago, the match against Naftan left "not the best of emotions." "We will try to switch and concentrate on tomorrow's game. We are preparing for a battle," said the football player.

"I do not think that I will get special attention from the opponent as an author of that goal. I'm a defender, and my task is to keep our goal locked," Rios added.