Pineau: “Györ are the favourites now”Article
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After losing by two at home in the first leg, Oltchim's French playmaker knows that the return game will be far from easy

Pineau: “Györ are the favourites now”

Allison Pineau was one of Oltchim’s best players in the Women’s EHF Champions League semi-final against Györ.

The French centre back was solid in defence and an integral part of the Romanian comeback in the second half.

However, Oltchim lost and have a mountain to climb in the second leg, which will be played in Veszprém on Thursday, 11 April. Pineau speaks to ahead of the match. Oltchim had the worst start to a match in years against Györ in the first leg. What happened in Bucharest?

Allison Pineau: First of all, we missed a lot of things. We didn’t believe as strongly as was needed in the victory. We made a lot of mistakes both in the first minutes and in the second half. We missed a lot of opportunities on fast breaks and a two important penalty shots. Jakob Vestergaard said that Oltchim’s players were under a lot of pressure before and during the game. Is that true?

Allison Pineau: Everybody expected a great performance from us and the pressure was on Oltchim because the second leg is going to be played in Veszprém. Therefore, if you want to qualify, you need to win your home game.

We didn’t accomplish this and one of the most important reasons for our failure was that we were nervous. I saw and felt this during the game. Do you still believe that Oltchim can qualify for the final? How do you see your chances of winning in Hungary?

Allison Pineau: Of course I believe in our chances to qualify and I don’t care about how big or small the chance of going into the final is. Györ are the favourites now, because they won in Bucharest. We have to forget our loss and be focused on Thursday. You are quite confident, but what does Oltchim need to do to win in Veszprém?

Allison Pineau: Oltchim will need everything to win. Every player has to up their game, play like a team and find their fighting spirit. Györ can be beaten, even if their worst result is a draw this season and they won every match at home. What are the key areas in this game? What will be the most important factor to win against Györ?

Allison Pineau: Well, several factors will be key regarding Thursday’s game. I won’t tell everything, because I like to surprise our opponents, but we have to play without mistakes and be stronger in defence. Another important factor that we have to improve is scoring on all fast breaks, which are crucial for these types of games.

TEXT: Adrian Costeiu / cor