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Women's coaches consider play-off tasks

Czech Republic coach Dušan Žovinec says that his side have revenge in mind after being drawn with Italy as uefa.com rounds up the reaction to today's draw for this month's UEFA WOMEN'S EURO 2009™play-off ties.

The UEFA WOMEN'S EURO 2005™ technical observers Vera Pauw and Anna Signeul hope to be coaching the Netherlands and Scotland at the 2009 finals
The UEFA WOMEN'S EURO 2005™ technical observers Vera Pauw and Anna Signeul hope to be coaching the Netherlands and Scotland at the 2009 finals ©UEFA.com

Czech Republic v Italy
Dušan Žovinec, Czech Republic coach

The first ever participation at a EURO is a great challenge, particularly for those players who feel it is the last chance before the end of their careers. Italy are definitely a top European side, but we want to avenge them for the previous defeat. The pressure is on them, we can only surprise and that is to our advantage.

Patrizia Panico, Italy captain
It's curious to face the same team we faced in the play-offs four years ago. We won last time around and I think we can do it again if we face the two games with a good spirit and with the right approach. We want to achieve important results in Europe. I'm eager to play in another European Championship after the disappointing tournament in 2005.

Republic of Ireland v Iceland
Noel King, Ireland manager
First of all, even being in this morning's draw at the last stage of qualification is a fantastic achievement. It didn't matter who we got in the draw, it was always going to be difficult but I am pleased that we got Iceland from a logistical point of view in comparison to tricky ties we could have got in Russia or Ukraine. We have played Iceland three times before, losing twice and drawing once. Women's football in Iceland is enjoying a period of sustained success as they have established a thriving national league but this is an opportunity that our players will grasp with both hands.

Sigurdur Ragnar Eyjólfsson, Iceland coach
I am pleased about this and we look forward to these games. Ireland have a good team and we are preparing ourselves for two difficult and tight games, both teams have the same opportunity to go further in the competition. I was not to keen on meeting the Czechs, they are ranked highest of the teams we were up against and would have meant a longer, more difficult journey, not to mention we have lost against them, so I am pleased. Probably Ireland are pleased at meeting us since we are ranked lowest of the teams in the pot. I think after our good game against France [Iceland were beaten 2-1 to miss out on automatic qualification], despite losing the girls can see how close we are to making the finals and hopefully that will make the difference. These two nations have twice met, first in the Algarve Cup 2007 where Iceland won 4-1 and earlier this year there was a 1-1 draw. There has been an agreement that first game will be at Tolka Park in Ireland on 26 October and second in Iceland on 30 October at the national stadium.

Scotland v Russia
Anna Signeul, Scotland manager
I travelled to Russia for their final group game against Norway, and I saw a very good side – in fact they were unlucky not to win. This is arguably the most difficult draw we could have been handed, but nothing is impossible. We have produced some excellent performances recently and we know that we definitely have a chance against Russia. We will certainly be up for it and will give everything over the two legs to secure a place at the finals in Finland.

Igor Shalimov, Russia coach
We do not have much information about our opponents. But I know that Scotland are a strong team which performed well in all their games in the qualifying round. However, I'm thinking not about the opponents but about our preparation. Due to inconvenient flight schedules we could miss two training days.

Slovenia v Ukraine
Ukraine coach Anatoliy Kutsev
Ireland, Slovenia and the Czech Republic were our possible opponents. The latter look a bit stronger, so we can say we were handed a quite favourable draw. Slovenia play the same football as we do. They had an inconsistent qualifying campaign, suffered heavy losses after big wins, but I'm sure they will give their best in the play-offs, so we need a top performance to get through.

Spain v Netherlands
Ignacio Quereda, Spain coach
The Netherlands are one of the best sides we could have faced but the draw is the way it is and we have to accept it. They're one of the teams we know very well; we have videos of games they have played and we're going to start by analysing those and based on that we'll put a plan together.

Vera Pauw, Netherlands coach
Spain are a good side, with fast players and some real top talents in their squad. They are all working professionally, being paid and play for big sides like [Athletic Club] Bilbao, Atlético Madrid and [FC] Barcelona. In recent years Spain have made some big steps forward internationally. The difference in the world rankings may be not that big [Spain are 19th, the Netherlands 20th], but still we will be the underdogs.

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