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Kurnenin delighted by coming of age

Published: Friday 19 June 2009, 23.54CET
Belarus coach Yuri Kurnenin was delighted with his players after they bounced back from their defeat by Sweden to draw with a Serbia team whose coach Slobodan Krčmarević expected better.
by Patrick Hart
from Malmö New Stadium
Kurnenin delighted by coming of age
Zoran Tošić takes on Andrei Chukhlei during the 0-0 draw in Malmo ©Getty Images

Match statistics

BelarusSerbia

Goals scored0
 
0
Attempts on target3
 
2
Attempts off target4
 
6
Corners4
 
5
Fouls committed28
 
19
Yellow cards4
 
2
Red Cards0
 
0

Standings

Group A(Host country: Sweden)

TeamsPWDLFA+/-Pts
1Italy Italy21102114
2Sweden Sweden21016333
3Serbia Serbia20200002
4Belarus Belarus201115-41

Legend:

P: Played   
W: Won   
D: Drawn   
L: Lost   
F: For   
A: Against   
+/-: Goal difference   
Last updated: 30/11/2017 14:57 CET
Published: Friday 19 June 2009, 23.54CET

Kurnenin delighted by coming of age

Belarus coach Yuri Kurnenin was delighted with his players after they bounced back from their defeat by Sweden to draw with a Serbia team whose coach Slobodan Krčmarević expected better.

Belarus coach Yuri Kurnenin was full of praise for his players after they bounced back from a crushing 5-1 defeat by Sweden to register their first point at this UEFA European Under-21 Championship. If the 0-0 draw with Serbia brought satisfaction to Kurnenin, it left the Serbia coach Slobodan Krčmarević decidedly underwhelmed by his team's second Group A stalemate.

Yuri Kurnenin, Belarus coach
The Serbian players are individually very strong so you have to prevent them taking control of the ball and of the game. If you do this, and cover all the spaces on the pitch, you can stop them scoring. It was important that we showed our character today. During the Sweden game we had been really nervous and this badly affected our performance. Today we were calm and we played like we knew what we were doing. Now, against Italy on Tuesday, we will hope to go one better again – we'll really give it our best shot. It was very difficult to lift ourselves after what happened against Sweden, but we managed to overcome such a blow to our confidence and I have to give my players huge credit for this. Today we showed that we are men and that we deserve to be playing in this championship.

Slobodan Krčmarević, Serbia coach
I cannot be satisfied with this result. We had the better chances but we were not at our best in the final third of the pitch, around their goal. We have top-class players but we were not good enough in making the final pass. However, we still have one game to play and I believe we will put on a much better performance in front of a full house against Sweden. We also owe that to our supporters, who came along in numbers today – I am disappointed for them and hope to give them better on Tuesday. Sweden weren't as good today [in losing to Italy] as against Belarus, so I think our match will be 50-50. I don't think the fact they may need only a point is a big advantage for them, because in a situation like that one goal changes everything. I still believe in our qualities as individuals and as a team, and I am confident we will be much better next time. However, we don't have any ready-made solutions up front, having lost our first-choice forward Filip Djordjević and then another important attacking player, Nemanja Matić, to injury. It is a situation we can't change, but I still believe we can do better – we just have to make sure we play more around the opposition area, and not further back.

Last updated: 20/06/09 9.07CET

http://www.uefa.com/under21/season=2009/matches/round=15086/match=304490/postmatch/quotes/index.html#kurnenin+delighted+coming