Olympiacos, Mendilibar: “Many similarities between this final and the last one with Roma”

Live TMW

5.10pm – In a little while Jose Luis Mendilibarcoach of Olympiacos, presents in a press conference tomorrow’s final against Olympiacos which will award the Conference League.

5.29pm – After the conferences of the Olympiacos players, the coach speaks.

Any differences between the preparation for the last final and this one?
“There are many similarities in how, in the starting point and the arrival point. But they are different teams and circumstances.”

Last year you won the Europa League with two Moroccan players, do you plan to do it again?
“Yes, they also played in similar roles… Especially El Kaabi has made an excellent contribution so far with his goals, we owe him a lot.”

You have many players who speak Portuguese. How important is Rodinei in the dressing room?
“It’s very useful to have such a character in the squad, we’re very happy about it. We’re all happy with the situation, not just Rodinei. For the moment, however, this climate is good.”

Italiano said he brought padlocks and chains to cage El Kaabi.
“There are ten other players in addition to El Kaabi, they will also have to worry about those in addition to the striker, although they are of great value. Everyone is fixated on him, but we have other players: we worry about the whole of Fiorentina, El Kaabi doesn’t he is the only one capable of making a difference for Olympiacos.”

How can you encourage your team ahead of the match?
“We have to stay calm, calm, and do what got us to the final. It would be a big mistake to change anything, given that so far everything has been positive. Let’s treat this match like the others, this is how we got here and we will have to continue like this”.

Did you see the same spark as Seville in the locker room? What words will you say to the players before taking the field?
“I didn’t look closely at the players’ eyes and didn’t pay attention to it, but yesterday in training I saw a great desire to play in the final. I insisted on the fact that we have to believe in it and that we have to do the same things for one last match. We will have to give everything tomorrow.”

Ready to write a page in the history of Greek football?
“Clearly there is a lot of hunger and desire to win the match tomorrow night. If someone has reached the final without this, it’s strange. With one last session missing, I expect to see the same look from the players. They are really motivated.”

Was the turning point in overturning the 1-4 score in the first leg against Maccabi Tel Aviv?
“That match showed what we are capable of, we did everything to turn the match around. From half-time in the second leg we knew that we were capable of anything.”

How does he feel?
“I’m very calm, I can’t wait for the last training session and I hope everything goes well. There will be a bit of stress just before the match but at the moment there’s nothing that worries me.”

Ancelotti said he eats pasta, salmon and broccoli. She?
“I remember exactly what I ate last year, I think I’ll eat some pasta tonight. It will be flatter, even if I don’t eat that much.”

Have you decided who will play?
“I’ll start with the second part of the question: yes, I have decided who will start and the game plan, unless something happens in training. Our journey so far has been a marathon, with four direct elimination rounds. We have experienced moments of difficulties and crossed Europe, playing both as favorites and as underdogs: it’s a combination of different moments, but we’ve arrived here, at the end of the journey.”

5.46pm – The press conference ends.