Beşiktaş JK may need a favour from VfL Wolfsburg as well as a win against PFC CSKA Moskva to keep their European campaign alive, but midfielder Tomáš Sivok is confident they will do exactly that.
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Beşiktaş JK may need a favour from VfL Wolfsburg as well as a win against PFC CSKA Moskva to keep their European campaign going into the spring, but midfielder Tomáš Sivok is confident they will do exactly that.
Despite a 1-0 victory at Manchester United FC on Matchday 5, Beşiktaş's hopes of reaching the UEFA Champions League first knockout round had already ended and they remained bottom, three points adrift of Wolfsburg and CSKA. To finish third and enter the UEFA Europa League Round of 32, Beşiktaş must beat CSKA by better than the 2-1 scoreline by which their opponents prevailed in their Moscow meeting in September, and also hope Wolfsburg secure at least a point at home to United. Sivok is confident that will happen. "If you have a look at the mood in our team, there is no pressure," he said. "United will drop points at Wolfsburg and we'll go to the Europa League. Everybody believes in this result."
They will need to reverse a home run in the group in which Beşiktaş have lost 1-0 to United and 3-0 against Wolfsburg, but Sivok is sure that playing at the Inönü is still a big advantage. "Beşiktaş fans are great," he said. "They were the most important factor in our Turkish double success last season. Even though we have had some bad times this season, they have done nothing to negatively affect the players. But we feel pressure of our own when we can't score. Unfortunately, goals don't come easy and whenever you want them. I want our fans to support us. We might score late. They should be patient and support us until the final whistle."
While Beşiktaş have been short of goals this season, they have conceded only six in 15 Turkish Super League games, the best in the division. "When we talk about our good defensive record, we shouldn't just focus on defenders," Sivok said. "Good defending depends on the whole team. Our coach and my team-mates had a great hand in this success. We work a lot and this work has borne fruit."
CSKA need to pick up more points in Istanbul than Wolfsburg manage at home to United, and defender Vasili Berezutski is well aware how tough their end of the bargain is. "It is always difficult to play away," he said. "Bearing in mind that Beşiktaş have very passionate fans, our job will be harder. However, we'll try to focus on our own game to win. This will be the last game for us this year before we go on holiday. To enjoy the break we would like to have a good finish. It's important to do that. Every player on the squad will feel better after achieving victory."