Thursday, July 25, 2024

´A new tournament starts´ – Batista urges Venezuela to move on from perfect group stage

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 4 Jul 2024

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Fernando Batista acknowledged Venezuela’s perfect Copa America group-stage record is no longer relevant, as his side prepare to face Canada in the quarter-finals.

La Vinotinto won their opening three matches at the tournament for the first time in their history, as they soared to the top of Group B with victories over Ecuador, Jamaica and Mexico.

Only Uruguay (nine) scored more goals during the group phase than Venezuela (six), who are now aiming to reach only their second Copa America semi-final (matching their performance of 2011).

While Batista was delighted by his side’s early exploits in the United States, he insists they must put it behind them in their quest for victory over Canada.

“It’s all very nice what we experienced in the first round, but it’s over now,” he told reporters during his pre-match press conference.

“Nothing has been achieved yet. We are a growing team that knows that the next final is tomorrow.

“There’s still a long way to go, and what’s over is over. Now, a new tournament starts, because you can’t rely on a draw or a previous result.”

“Defensively, Canada are strong and aggressive, and they have a lot of strength in midfield,” he added.

“The idea is to try to win in the 90 or 95 minutes of the game. Obviously, we practise penalties, but it’s not our objective.”

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