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Patrick Vieira: "Just not good enough"

Post match Nice-Monaco

November 8, 2020

Patrick Vieira: "Just not good enough"

Patrick Vieira spoke to the media in the press conference this Sunday, after the defeat against AS Monaco (1-2)

Patrick, what are your thoughts coming off the back of that defeat?

It’s a massive disappointment. We’re frustrated because we didn’t do what we set out to do or what we’d put in place for the game. From then on, it was obviously going to be difficult to pose a threat. We’re sad and frustrated by both the performance and the defeat.

Just like in Prague on Thursday (3-2 defeat against Slavia) your team seemed to lack intensity.

I’ve always said it: we lack intensity and we’ve got to work on it. It won’t just appear out of nowhere. You could see it in the way we started the game: the lack of intensity really hindered us, especially up against a side like Monaco. It doesn’t matter what we set out to do, when we step out onto the pitch we need to show more conviction. It also stems from me as a manager. We were well below par this afternoon and we were beaten by the better team. Despite that, there’s no need to rethink our game plan or what we’ve been able to do all season. I’ve always said that we aren’t the best side in the league, but we’re far from being the worst.

How are you looking to improve in that regard?

It’s not a new problem for us, it’s the mentality. We have to work hard at it and be better. It’s not always important whether we win or lose the game, but our attitude has to be spot on every time. From the players to the staff and the club as a whole, we all need to be better and improve on that front. From the staff and the club’s point of view, we need to be a bit more demanding of the players.

Stanley Nsoki’s error cost you dearly.

Yes, it was a lack of concentration. They’re the type of errors that cost us, especially against the top sides. We have to get rid of these errors if we want to compete with the best. These mistakes will make the players progress on an individual level, but when we make them it makes things much harder for us. Nsoki isn’t the only one who struggled today. It’s the whole team: the other players and the manager too, because of the system I put in place. What we showed today is simply not good enough against a side like Monaco. This defeat doesn’t change what we’ve accomplished this season. There are things we need to improve upon and there’s a lot of work still to do. But if we want to win games, we have to make significantly fewer errors.

With Dante being out injured, do you think you’ll continue with three at the back?

Dante was a big miss for us today but some players have to do a lot better than they did in this game. They need to gain confidence and I’ll give them that. They need to carry on working hard and I’ll be a lot more demanding of them in training to try and stop us from making the errors that cost us week in week out.

You played Morgan Schneiderlin at centre back in the first half, before moving him into midfield in the second period. Why was that?

It was tough for us. He was finding it hard and that’s why I changed it at half time. I wanted to try something, but it didn’t work out like I wanted it to. In that first quarter of an hour, we really struggled : they had so much space because of the pace they have and Walter saved us. After the break we were a bit better in the 4-3-3 formation. I chose the system and it probably wasn’t the right decision judging by the first half. If we had started with a

4-3-3 and played badly, you would have asked why I’d changed formation. I made the decision to keep the same shape with Morgan in between the two centre backs. There were some good and bad points, but mostly bad ones.