Pahars proud of Latvia heroes
Monday, October 13, 2014
Latvia coach Marians Pahars called his players "real heroes" after they battled back to draw with Turkey in Group A, a result that left Fatih Terim "not satisfied at all".
Article top media content
• Latvia coach Marians Pahars says his players "are real heroes" after 1-1 draw
• Pahars delighted with point after bouncing back from defeat in Iceland
• Turkey coach Fatih Terim "not satisfied at all" with draw after dominating in Riga
• Terim praises Latvia's "fighting spirit" after they recover from 1-0 down
• Next games: Netherlands v Latvia, Turkey v Kazakhstan (16 November)
Marians Pahars, Latvia coach
It was a good game and a fair result. I'm happy for the players as it was really tough for them after a big loss against Iceland [0-3 in Riga on Friday]. We are still on the ground, not in the sky, but I believe we've sent a clear message tonight. We're still fighting to qualify, but every point in this group is a great achievement for us.
I really liked the match and it's an important point. Of course, they had chances, especially at the start. They are probably stronger than us – not only in the FIFA rankings, but with the clubs their players represent as well. Some of our players compete in the Latvian league. Two guys who started the match don't have clubs at all. Terim may say we were lucky to get this draw, but I say we deserved this result. We could even have won if Kaspars Dubra had scored in added time. My lads are real heroes.
Fatih Terim, Turkey coach
I believe we deserved to win tonight. We had something like ten good chances and they were only able to score with a penalty. I can't remember them creating anything in the first half, and the situation didn't change much after the break, but that can happen in football. Latvia were extremely happy with the draw and that tells its own story. On the other hand, we are not satisfied at all.
For Latvia it was normal to attack down the wings as we were going forward in numbers. For me, the key was the fact that their equaliser came right after we had opened the scoring. I would like to congratulate our opponents for this result – they showed a real fighting spirit on the pitch.