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Portugal do their job as Ukraine feel hurt

"Pragmatic" was the word Portugal coach Jorge Braz used to sum up the 2-1 quarter-final defeat of Ukraine that delighted Ricardinho but left Yevgen Ryvkin feeling empty.

Portugal do their job as Ukraine feel hurt
Portugal do their job as Ukraine feel hurt ©UEFA.com

Jorge Braz, Portugal coach
I feel huge satisfaction and pride in having this team among the best four in Europe. This involves a lot of work and sacrifice from everyone. We have been a very pragmatic team in this tournament, the sort of team you need to be at a European Championship. We set an objective and we met it, simple as that.

We were a bit shaky in the first half and the quality of our game was not always the one needed at this level, but we compensated for that with an impressive mentality.

We realised that we had to have more quality in the second half and we raised the intensity of our game. When that happens we normally win and that was once again the case. If we look at what happened for the entire 40 minutes, I truly believe we deserved to qualify for the semi-finals. Like I have said on more than one occasion, I'm only worried about my team; I'm really not that interested whether we face Italy or Croatia. We'll play to win, that's for sure.

Ricardinho, Portugal forward
Before anything else I have to say: we've done it! We started the tournament with the objective of advancing from the group stage and we did just that. After that we told ourselves we wanted more than the quarter-finals and that is also guaranteed. Concerning the game itself, we knew it would be very difficult, but the eastern European teams are just like that: they are ruthless and they fight right until the last second. Fortunately Portugal also had a great game.

We helped each other out there, although in the first half that was not always the case because we were playing with a big distance between each player. That is not good in futsal. In the second half we managed to get it right and were able, once again, to give cause to celebrate to these amazing fans who never stopped supporting us. When you arrive at this stage you can't pick who you are going to face so it doesn't really matter if we play Italy or Croatia. We will play to win and that's what's important.

Pedro Cary, Portugal defender
It was as difficult as we expected. We had to show a lot of respect towards a Ukraine team who play a very difficult game to face. Their game may not be attractive to a lot of people but the truth is they are very effective and hard to deal with. It wasn't a beautiful game to watch but one where both teams showed a lot of respect for the other.

Cardinal is a lethal scorer and he was decisive for us tonight, but all the players deserve high praise for what they did. Maybe we haven't yet managed to show all the good things we do in practice but I'm sure that will happen at the right moment, starting with the semi-finals.

Yevgen Ryvkin, Ukraine coach
[The feeling is] total emptiness. Unfortunately we are going home. Portugal have top quality players and their disposal and it was tough playing them, but still we tried to compete against them and sometimes even managed to impose our game. I would also like to thank Ukraine's players. Well done. They did their best. They can go home with their heads held high.

There is no escaping the mistakes we made, and it was a kind of match when a singe error can decide everything. It was probably the case when, like they say, a win is for team and a loss if for the coach. Unfortunately, we did not perform when we had the flying goalkeeper. As a result we found ourselves unable to use our usual links and play we have worked on in training. One player was suspended, another one got injured during the match. Instead of sound, crisp passing play we tried to take them by storm unfortunately. We have to work on that.

Denys Ovsyannikov, Ukraine forward
There would have been positive emotions had we, and myself in particular, scored one more goal and at least made it a draw. But since we lost the game we have no other emotions but negative ones. Individual skill decided the outcome, especially that of Cardinal. They did not outplay us, we lost it just in the individual skills. Though I would say that it was our best game in the tournament.

We did not fulfil our task because we wanted to progress to the semi-finals. But what's the point in crying? Life goes on. The most important is that I hope we presented a good match to our fans for who we play. Playing at the European Championship itself is a gift that not everyone can boast of.