Pilsen footballers celebrated as the first Czech team in history to advance from the group stage of the European Cup after only four matches, their opponent from Zagreb had a hard time biting the feelings of grievance. “I think it wasn’t completely fair today,” Dinamo coach Sergej Jakirovic said after Thursday’s 0:1 loss in the west of the Czech Republic.
In the first match in the Croatian capital, Viktoria won 1:0 with a goal from the penalty spot, and in the same way they took the lead in the European Conference League match in Štruncový sady.
“I think the penalty against us is at least strange,” Jakirovič faced. Dinamo did not like the assessment of the penalty even in the first meeting in Zagreb.
After the change of sides, the referee in Pilsen ordered a penalty for the visitors as well, but after the intervention of the video referee, he called it off.
The Croatians then scored an equalizing goal in the set time, but VAR intervened again and did not please the guests again. Due to the close position offside, he canceled the shot.
“It seems to me that drawing the offside lines is so random,” Jakirovic lamented. “I just don’t get it,” he shook his head in displeasure. “However, I have the feeling that it is not a coincidence,” he added.
The coach of the winners, Miroslav Koubek, understandably did not engage in lengthy analyzes of the judges’ verdicts.
“There were certain moments that were scrutinized. The opponent was already rejoicing, then we were rejoicing again. VAR proved it, as he proved it, and he is not wrong at that moment,” he declared.
What he enjoyed more was that his charges won all four opening games in the premiere in the main stage of the Conference League and with two rounds before the end of Group C they have a certain first place.
“It’s certainly an emotional and special moment. As I learned, we made another record, that after four rounds the Czech team is advancing,” Koubek enjoyed.
“We had to work hard, fight for the game. We were running out of strength in the second half. The end was really hectic and we all took a breather and rejoiced when the referee blew the whistle,” admitted Koubek.
He also performed a special celebratory gesture during the final thank-you ceremony with the home fans. “I won’t do somersaults, that would probably harm my health. But I can still do such a pirouette. On the left, right leg. That’s not a problem,” remarked the coach from Pilsen with a smile.
According to him, the certainty of advancement in the Conference League will help Victoria in the rest of the autumn part of the season.
“It’s important. Now I don’t want to predict what staffing measures we’ll make for the next matches. We still have a really demanding program ahead of us. We will undoubtedly have to use the full width of the staff. We’ll think about where we’ll look for higher priorities at the moment,” thought Koubek, whose team is third in the Czech league.
“I know that in the next two Conference League matches we also play the Czech coefficient. We know that it does not happen every day and there are benefits for the club as well. But after some mature consideration, other players will be given space in the league and cup matches, who are now patiently and they very disciplinedly waited for a chance,” added the former goalkeeper.