Dejected, Sampaoli admits apathetic team but talks about title

Dejected, Sampaoli admits apathetic team but talks about title

A team on the ropes and with a coach no longer involved with the squad. That was the impression given by coach Jorge Sampaoli after the 1-0 defeat to São Paulo in the first game of the Copa do Brasil final this Sunday, at Maracanã. However, when asked if Flamengo still believes in winning the title at Morumbi, the coach tried to give the fans a glimmer of hope. “We’re going to be champions. I have that thought. Not only me but also the coaching staff. I’m sure of that.”

Despite the catchphrase, dejection accompanied the Argentine coach throughout the press conference. Sampaoli credited the defeat with the first half being much lower than expected and admitted that Flamengo had not yet managed to present the football he expected.

“São Paulo proposed the game in the first half and we were very inaccurate in the last third of the field. In the second half they planted themselves on the field and we managed to attack, but we lacked the conviction to kill the rival”, said the coach.

Bombarded by questions, mainly about the option of using Gabigol, Pedro and Bruno Henrique in attack from the start, Sampaoli spoke about the Rio team’s lack of willingness.

“It’s a pain for me too. We’re a long way from putting together the team I want on the field. So far, the performances I expect at Flamengo haven’t happened yet.”

Sampaoli exempted goalkeeper Matheus Cunha from blame for Calleri’s goal and stated that the player has his trust for everything he has done under his command since taking over as coach at Flamengo.

“I’m not going to blame anyone. Matheus Cunha has a very good performance. He showed great growth, played great games and I’m not going to blame the defeat on him”, commented Sampaoli, ruling out the possibility of using Argentine Rossi for the match. return of the Copa do Brasil decision.

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