Ivan Leko: “Owe this defeat to ourselves”

A strong start, followed up with a fall-back. Ivan Leko saw how his team suffered its second defeat of the season.

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“A painful defeat. We started out well, though, with defensive solidity in the first half hour, hardly giving away any chances. After that, it even seemed like we had too much confidence, making us drift away and allowing Charleroi to get back into the game. Their first chance ended up against the back of our nets because we weren't intense enough defending that chance. Different story in the second half, however. Charleroi put some fine pressure, keeping us from our usual game. By the end, we tried everything to win this game, but with the exception of Rezaei hitting the post, we didn't get any real chances.”

Ivan Leko
Ivan Leko

A weak performance after a European night, it's not a first for Leko's outfit. "We owe this defeat entirely to ourselves. We missed sharpness and precision, lacked the power. On the one hand that's only logical, as playing a Champions League game is very demanding. Bu ton the other hand we also need to analyse just why we lack grinta and motivation in the league after a European game. If you have to go full speed every three days, it's normal you can't always play with the same intensity, but in those moments you have to seize your timing, which we didn't today. If we were to have taken a 0-2 lead in the first half hour, we probably would have won this. And we also didn't seize the moment when Rezaei hit the post at 1-1. I'm not saying it's a lack of quality or mentality, just that this group has shown before that we have those in spades. But unfortunately not so today. We are all disappointed, but right now we need to keep working hard in full confidence to make sure we are ready to take on the next cycle after the international break.” (SF)

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