Team Manager Mischa - press conference after the match against Kashima Antlers  

Comment from Team Manager Mischa after the Meiji Yasuda Life Insurance Company J. League 10th sec match against Kashima Antlers

It was so painful to lose the home match we played in front of nearly 60,000 spectators today.

I believe that we were playing in our opponent’s side of the field for about 80 per cent of the match. As has often been the case with our matches against Kashima Antlers, when we first lose our goal in an unfortunate way like we did today, the rest of the match becomes so hard to play.

Having said that, I don’t think we did badly today. We created several good opportunities and we could have even scored a goal or two had we had more precision in our movements.

I can appreciate that our players played hard until the very end of the match despite the challenging developments. We can expect some developments like the ones we had today can happen when playing a soccer match. Nonetheless, our players fought hard until the very end in order to seize a victory. They ran hard until the last moment and they did well in terms of the fighting spirit they showed today.

Over the past three weeks or so, our team could not have enough training as we had to play a series of matches and this might have had a negative effect on how we were not able to win our past two matches. Urawa Reds is a team which fosters abilities to win against our opponents through working on our coordination, combinations and ideas by repeating our movements during our training practices. However, playing several matches and working on our recovery over a short period of time recently started to take a toll on us little by little. I believe this may has caused our two defeats recently. Now that we have a bit of time until our next match, I would like to see us to stay calm and make necessary adjustments for ourselves by communicating well with each other and having good training.

Our winning opponent, Kashima Antlers is a very formidable team which ranks first or second in Japan. Our team’s performance today against such an opponent was not that bad after all. As we lost today, you may not agree but I don’t think our team is inferior to them.

I said a few weeks ago that soccer is such a dangerous sport after we won a match. Even when a team wins a number of matches, they can lose a series of their following matches when playing soccer. This goes to show how dangerous a sport soccer can be. However, looking back at our team’s overall performance until now and given the fact that we have also been playing for the ACL, I believe we have been doing quite well so far.
Obviously, it is hard for me to say such a thing after the team lost two matches in a row. But, judging the team’s current situation calmly and considering the year-long season as a marathon, I don’t think our team has been running badly so far. Rather, they are running well. While I strongly regret our team’s defeat, I want to focus on how I can put our team back on the right track by analyzing our situation calmly in order to move forward.

When we kept winning a few matches in a row, we received many words of praise. However, now that we have lost two matches in a row, we are likely to receive some criticisms. However, things change very quickly in the world of soccer. Against such a reality, all we can do is to accept our defeats firmly and start working hard again to prepare ourselves well for the next match.
[Urawa Reds Official Media (URD: OM)]

Team Manager Mischa – press conference after the match against Kashima Antlers