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Portugal 'hurting' after Austria stalemate

Susana Cova bemoaned Portugal's lack of cutting edge after they were held to a goalless draw by Austria, whose coach Dominik Thalhammer extolled his side's defensive discipline.

Susana Cova knows where Portugal came up short
Susana Cova knows where Portugal came up short ©Sportsfile

Dominik Thalhammer, Austria coach
At the end of the day, we're happy. I think it was a relatively even game with both sides very strong in the tackle. Both teams defended well and my team in particular were very well organised at the back. We weren't able to play any of the technical football that we would have wanted to, but it was only the first game at the finals, so we're happy. 

It's going to be very tight [in the group]. England need to win or at least pick up a point in our coming game so it's going to be very difficult for us. Italy have done as I expected them to – they only lost one game in the elite round, and that was 2-1 against Portugal. However, all four teams are relatively even and it was difficult for England to come into the tournament without having had to qualify.

It's important that we recharge our batteries and see if we've got any injuries and if the players concerned can recover. Above all, we will do some analysis to show the players certain things that we can improve.

Susana Cova, Portugal coach 
We have to be happy with a point – the game is over and we can't do anything now. A draw was not a fair result after a game like this. We dominated the game from the first minute until the last, so we deserved more. We were lacking a goal and something in the final third – we need to improve in that area and we'll try to adapt our game for the next opponents.

We are here to learn and help the players do their best, but it seems that wasn't enough, so we'll have to keep on working to get the job done. The next game [against Italy] is not going to be a similar game to this – it's going to be quite different, not from our team but the opposition. They have a different style. From watching tonight's game it's easy to see where we need to improve – in the final phase of our offensive play. Tonight, everyone is hurting.