Interviews

Ismail Kartal: “We haven’t secured the round yet!”

Fenerbahçe's head coach, Ismail Kartal, held a press conference ahead of the match against Union Saint-Gilloise in the UEFA Conference League.

Fenerbahçe's head coach, Kartal, held a ahead of the match against Saint-Gilloise.

“We didn't secure the quarterfinals just because we won 3-0.”

Speaking about the first match, Kartal said, “The comments I will make about the first match are about the opponent we faced, who has not lost in the last 22 matches in their league and finishes every match by scoring. They are a systematic team. We trained very well before the match. Our players fought very well in line with the plan. We were planning to win the match, not with a 3-0 score but at least with a . We knew we could win the match. We got a clear victory. It was a beautiful football night. We came here with an advantage. Just because we won 3-0 doesn't mean we secured the quarterfinals. Anything can happen in football. We want to do our best to advance to the next round in front of our . Our players are focused. We are also aware of the importance of the points we will contribute to the country's ranking,” he said.

“There might be some rotation.”

Responding to the question about rotation, said, “Rotation might be partial. Playing a match every 3 days is not easy. We could only rest for 1 day after the Union SG match last week. The league matches after European competitions are not easy. We struggled in the first half of the Pendik match but recovered in the second half. Our opponent also had a difficult time in the league match and ended up with a draw. We want to be successful both in the league and in Europe,” he said.

“If we can compete in the same way, we can advance to the next round.”

Stating that he talked to the team about not securing the round yet, Kartal said, “I talked to the team. They are all aware that the job is not done yet. If we can compete in the same way tomorrow, we can advance to the next round. There won't be any complacency. It shouldn't be there either. We will complete the match with the same seriousness in front of our own fans,” he said.

Comments on Tadic, King, and Kent

Talking about the of Tadic, King, and Kent, Kartal said, “Tadic is very accustomed to this period. Because he is used to it, he enjoys playing. I am in constant dialogue with him. Irfan has recovered. We have ; we can play him. There is no clear information about King's return date,” he said.

“The whole team believes.”

Reiterating their desire for titles both in Europe and the Super League, Kartal said, “The whole team believes. We believe we will be champions. In Europe, we will go as far as we can. Physically, we are in good condition. It is not an easy task to come back in matches where we fell behind. Their belief and confidence in turning the match around are not a problem, so we can achieve it. This is an important weapon, and I am pleased with it,” he said.

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