From 1-0 to 1-2 – Sturm Graz was not rewarded despite taking a lead in the opening game of the Europa League group phase against Sporting Lisbon. Here are the voices for the game.
Christian Ilzer (striker coach): “Of course we are all disappointed, we did a lot of things right. Based on the second half, it was a deserved win, even if the goals could have been defended. In the first half it was a tactical game where we neutralized ourselves. The goal gave us the momentum. Kjell had two miracle saves and we felt we could stabilize the game and win here. Then we concede these goals and that’s why it’s bitter and very disappointing.” Stefan Hierländer (striker captain): “It’s bitter when you lead 1-0 at home in Graz and let the game slip out of your hands. There would have been more. The goal came at exactly the right time for us. It was an open game, both teams neutralized each other. After the goal we had a loss of energy and were no longer as grippy. Sporting really brought quality into the game with a few substitutions. We didn’t defend it the way it should be defended.” William Böving (striker goalscorer): “It’s frustrating to be left with nothing instead of a win. We needed at least one point. In the end they punished us. We should have continued after the first goal, with the fans and emotions behind us. But sometimes it’s hard. We all want to be there internationally after Christmas, but we need a few points for that.”Kjell Scherpen (striker goalie): “We don’t deserve this as a team. We fought the whole game and I had a few good saves. In the end we lost, we are very disappointed. We showed character and actually deserved more. Normally we have to get the win or take a point. To end up empty-handed is bitter.”