Okotie hails Austria team-mates
Saturday, November 15, 2014
Austria goalscorer Rubin Okotie praised "a great collective display" in the 1-0 win against Russia that left Marcel Koller relieved and Fabio Capello frustrated.
Article top media content
• Austria now five points clear of Russia in Group G after 1-0 victory
• Scorer Rubin Okotie shares credit with the team
• Zlatko Junuzovic and Marcel Koller point to second-half improvement
• Frustration for Fabio Capello
• Next games: Liechtenstein v Austria, Montenegro v Russia (27 March)
Rubin Okotie, Austria goalscorer
They made it particularly difficult for us. We are very happy with the three points. The only thing that matters is that we won the game. The fact that I was the one scoring is not really important. Of course, I'm really happy with the goal, but I think it was a great collective display. [For my goal] I was well positioned in front of goal and then the ball came and I just put it in the net.
It was a very tough game. We gave everything, all means were exhausted. We had to beat the Russians at home. We formed a very solid unit, we conceded few counterattacks. Our efforts were rewarded in the second half, as we were dominating and the best side on the pitch. We deserved this victory.
Zlatko Junuzovic, Austria forward
[Russia were our hardest opponents] by far, at least so far. But we allowed them only a few goal opportunities and a few shots in front of our goal in comparison with other games. We put in a great effort, we got better in the second half and we had more space. That's why we scored the goal. The whole team covered great distances and that's why we deserved to win.
Marcel Koller, Austria coach
It was tough, as we knew it would be. Russia played skilfully and fast, we had big problems in the first half and also a bit of luck that we were not behind.
It must be said that we lost an important player during the warm-up in [Julian] Baumgartlinger. The team reacted well to this shock and fought really well. In the second half we grew stronger and after bringing on Okotie a jolt went through the team.
In the end only a little thing has been decided. For European Championship qualifying, of course, this was an important step, but it is still far from being decided. Russia are still group favourites, we need to focus on the upcoming matches.
Fabio Capello, Russia coach
It was the expected tough game. Both teams really wanted to win. For both sides, it was an important game. We had chances in the first half and also some bad luck and unfortunately did not score. We then made one mistake and were punished.
I have to be satisfied with the performance of the team but with the qualifying situation I cannot be satisfied. But we will continue to work hard and still have the chance to qualify for the European Championship.