Simon Mignolet: “Feels great to be playing again”
A win and a clean sheet, a better debut would be hardly imaginable. With a fine save to deny Besedin in the first half, Simon Mignolet had a fair share in Club's narrow win versus Dynamo Kiev.
“We put in a fine performance, creating chances, and keeping that clean sheet, which was our intention. That' so important in Europe. The guys in front of me managed to clear everything, and I had to get that one ball. Apart from that, it was a matter of staying focused when the ball was played back. Club showed it is not the weaker team. We constructed a number of chances, and took a deserved lead. It could just as well have been a double lead at half-time. A narrow win with a clean sheet is always a fine result in Europe.”
A stir went through Jan Breydel as Besedin came eye-to-eye with Mignolet in the first half. “It takes a bit of luck in those kinds of situations. It was an acute angle, which worked in my advantage. The player tried his luck quickly, which allowed me to stay on my feet. I try to help out the team any way I can. There's not a lot that can be said about my performance today. I know every goal we concede will be scrutinised, but I know what's expected of me. I came here to be on the pitch and prove my worth for the team. It feels great to be saving those balls again, and not just be training. It's just a great feeling to be playing again.”
After the game, Mignolet was called by the fans to chant for them. “It struck a chord, really, the ambiance in the stadium. The fans really go with us through the game. It wasn't always like that at Anfield, sometimes it was a bit like going to the theatre. Here, the fans are really backing the team, and that's a great feeling.“
Getting acquainted with the team went smoothly. “The more you play, the more you have that connection with the players. The way they play the ball, the distance between the players, you name it. Things can only go better. Yesterday was all about getting to know the names of everyone. I konw the central defenders by name, but I wasn't able to see what their qualities were. It'll take some time to really get to know them. Ten matches in, things will be running much better. The dressing room was very welcoming, that's for sure. They're not only good players, they are also fighters and just all decent blokes.” (KN)