Sunday, March 26, 2017

Confidence coursing through Copenhagen

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 26 Sep 2016

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Copenhagen head coach Stale Solbakken says his players do not fear losing their impressive unbeaten record when they face Club Brugge in the Champions League.

The Danish champions are unbeaten in 20 matches in all competitions, a run stretching back to May this year.

An Andreas Cornelius goal secured a 1-1 draw at Porto on matchday one, Solbakken’s side holding out impressively in the last 25 minutes with 10 men after Jan Gregus was shown a second yellow card.

The Norwegian coach feels his side have built momentum on their unbeaten run, which could be crucial against evenly matched opposition from Belgium.

Solbakken said at his pre-match media conference: “The players feel secure with themselves and their team-mates when they go on the pitch. 

“Everyone knows what to do. We know sooner or later that we will lose again – when we do, we have to make sure we go on a new run. You lose games, but hopefully that statistic won’t end.

“We’re more or less on the same level. We’re capable of beating them and they’re very capable of beating us. 

“If I were sitting in Bruges, I would say they were slight favourites. We’re here, so I think we’re slight favourites. 

“Both teams know we have a chance of winning – they feel it, we feel it, so it should be a good game.”

Solbakken’s Brugge counterpart, Michel Preud’homme, led his side to a 4-0 away win against Tuesday’s opponents in the Europa League two seasons ago, but is not expecting things so simple this time around.

“Everyone at FCK has improved from two years ago,” he said. “They are very strong. 

“They score a lot of goals from crosses and set pieces and have a lot of power in the team. 

“They have four players for two positions on the flanks. They have a lot of creativity and when things are close you can expect a piece of skill from one of those players. 

“We always have in mind the 4-0 win here. Maybe we played our best-ever game in Europe here.

“But don’t forget the game we played before at home when they were leading and we equalised in the 92nd minute [to draw 1-1].”

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