Preparation key for Sweden coach Ericson
Tuesday, 30 June 2015
Sweden coach Håkan Ericson said he and his staff had "not slept for two days" such was the extent of their final preparations, praising his team for "daring to believe".
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Håkan Ericson, Sweden coach
I can't find any words, it feels like paradise, heaven something like that. It means a lot – we know we have fewer resources than a lot of other countries in Europe but we do well with what we have and we found a good balance in this team between some technical play but also all playing together. We have to do what we're good at.
It's like a fairy tale and it's incredible. Portugal are a fantastic football team who play great football. We prepared well for lots and lots of situations. We practised a lot of penalties and we prepared the order we would take them. One of the secrets is to be ready for anything. We've hardly slept for two days!
We in Sweden can achieve these things if we dare to think about things that are a bit scary. We have to dare to believe that we can win and not put up our guard for the pain that comes when we don't. My biggest task this time was to not limit this group of players. I'm incredibly proud that I managed that.
Of course we had a plan but we've also had luck these two weeks. We have a team that works very hard together with a very good team spirit but also, don't forget, very good individual players.
I hope this victory means that a lot of young children start to play football and to realise that everything is possible in life and in football. I also hope that our incredible fans celebrate a lot tonight!
Rui Jorge, Portugal coach
Of course it's a bitter feeling. If someone told us we'd be second before the start of the tournament, maybe it would have felt like a positive. But after all we've done here it can't be a positive because we deserve more. You're never a winner when you finish second.
However, what is positive are all the things we've done. Since our first match with this group of players we've been amazing. We had 15 [competitive] games without losing – and didn't score in only two of those matches – so I think that's worth mentioning again.
For us at the moment it feels unfair because we did everything in our power to win. It's natural we feel like this. The important thing is we wake up tomorrow and realise we did everything we could to get the result.