Sun 18 April 2021 | 9:22

Menezes admits he relied on his experienced squad against Al Sadd

The Al Nassr boss says his main worry for their Champions League clash was the tactical preparation.

Al Nassr

won their AFC Champions League match against

Xavi Hernandez

’s side with a 3-1 result.

Abderrazak Hamdallah

opened the scoring for Al Nassr with a spot-kick in the 37th minute.

Al Sadd

got their equalizer by

Santi Cazorla

’s strike just before the hour mark, but two goals from

Abdulmajeed Al-Sulayhem


Khalid Al-Ghannam

secured the victory for Saudi Arabian team. In a post-match interview,

Mano Menezes

admitted it had been hard for him to prepare his team for the match.

“It is always hard to prepare a team in a short time, especially for such an important match,”

said Menezes.

“My main worry was tactical discipline and this is why I made the easiest choice which is to rely on the experience of the players. This is our first victory of the competition and all the credit goes to the players.

“All the players who played the match - whether from the beginning or in the second half - managed to maintain the way we started the tie,”

said the 58-year-old coach.

“Big matches need certain strategies to show the best of the players in key moments,” said Menezes. “At the beginning of the match, we didn’t show all what we have but we improved in the second half.

“After conceding the equaliser, we organised ourselves and took advantage of quick counter attacks to score two goals and win the match.”

Al Sadd’s boss

Xavi Hernandez

admitted his side gave enough opportunities to their rivals to win the match.

“The match was difficult and it should have ended with a draw,”

said Xavi

. “We made some mistakes in the first half which allowed Al Nassr to open the scoring.

“We improved and managed to level the scores but then Al Nassr took advantage of their quick counter attacks to score two goals but I believe we deserved a better result.”

“We trained to stop the flanks of Al Nassr but we didn’t implement that today and committed mistakes which gave them the chance to attack us and score,”

continued the 41-year-old coach.

“Al Nassr proved today that they are one of the best teams in the competition but despite this, we didn’t deserve to lose.”

Al Nassr will play against Islamic Republic of Iran's

Foolad Khouzestan FC

in their next Group D match on Tuesday.


source: SportMob

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