Malta coach Pietro Ghedin was satisfied with the team’s performance during the opening 2014 FIFA World Cup qualifier despite the narrow defeat to Armenia.
Speaking after the game, Ghedin said he was satisfied with the performance although it was disappointing to lose due to a distraction by the rear-guard.
The Malta coach said the team did all it could, controlling their opponents well. He said Armenia proved to be a strong side, both in the technical and physical aspect – pointing out that their players were in very good physical condition considering that almost all players play in leagues which are mid-way through the season.
Photos: Copyright © Joe Borg / MFA
Rather than lack of determination, Ghedin said it was more a matter of pressure. He said the Malta players tried their best but it was not easy. However the Maltese only allowed their opponents to have a handful of shots at goal.
Ghedin admitted that up front, Malta could have done better, pointing out that Michael Mifsud was only eighty per cent fit.
“Something did not work well but all in all the players gave their very best. We could have done better and the goal could have definitely been avoided. But against such teams, you have to suffer. However the players leave the pitch with their heads held up high,” said Pietro Ghedin.
As regards Tuesday’s game against Italy in Modena, the Malta coach said that now the players have to recover theselves in view of this game. He said his task is to instill the courage and lift the morale of the players.
Ghedin will not change his 4-2-3-1 system, saying that the system is flexible and before trying to adopt a different scheme, one has to have the right players and they should be able to adapt themselves.
The Malta coach concluded by thanking supporters and said that in future matches, the team will reciprocate with better results.
Meanwhile Armenia coach Vardan Minasyan said it was a difficult game for both sides, also considering that it was their first outing. He said the performance of his team was not that good but what was the most important was the three points.
When asked how far will the team go in these qualifiers after a remarkable third place and seventeen points in the EURO 2012 qualifiers, Minasyan said the only focus will be from game to game and is now on next Tuesday’s game against Bulgaria.