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Vieira: "Slavia wanted it more"

Post-match Slavia 3-2 Nice

November 5, 2020

Vieira: "Slavia wanted it more"

OGC Nice Coach Patrick Vieira spoke following his side’s defeat at Slavia Prague (3-2).

Coach, how would you analyse your side’s performance?

It's a frustrating defeat because there was scope to do better. We didn't use the ball well and our play lacked depth. We weren’t able to find a solution to beat their defensive line of six.

The team conceded another three goals after the six conceded against Leverkusen.

Defensively, we made unforgivable mistakes that get punished at this level. We lacked agression and cohesion when we defended. We also conceded a goal from a set-piece, it’s frustrating. The opposition wanted it more than us and that bothers me.

Some players need to take on additional responsibilities during Dante’s absence.

It’s a team responsibility, but from the moment that Dante isn’t there, I expect several players to take on responsibilities. This evening, we failed because Slavia wanted it more than us. But the big difference is that they gave 300% in everything that they did, whereas we lacked rhythm in what we were trying to put in place. It was difficult to cause them problems. The three teams that we played (in the Europa League) were there to play a match of European football, but for us, we had good intentions but we need to do more and we weren’t able to do that as a team.

Aside from everything else, Ndoye’s goal at the end of the match could be important for what’s to come in the competition.

The second goal is important but when you look at our three games in Europe this season, we weren’t good enough in terms our intensity and in our duels. We need to improve on that. If we really want to get through the group stages, there are still lots of things to improve, especially in terms of our competitive spirit that we are lacking in the Europa League. When we go out on to the pitch, there is a gap between the opposition and us.

In the first half, Rony Lopes dropped deeper and Amine Gouiri moved up alongside Kasper Dolberg. What was the idea behind this reorganisation?

To have Amine through the middle to be able to support Kasper who was a bit isolated, with Pierre (Lees-Melou) and Rony behind them. Slavia had a man on Morgan (Schneiderlin) and we tried to find the gaps to be able to get Andy (Pelmard) or Bambu to come out from the back, but we didn’t have enough rhythm to create the gaps and the numerical advantage.