SPORTS

Santos: Winning ‘by half a goal’ will do

Victory, ”even by half a goal,” is what Greece coach Fernando Santos wants from his players on March 26 in the Maltese capital of Valletta, as he said just before the squad’s departure for its Euro 2012 qualifying game.

Speaking at Athens Airport on March 25, the Portuguese manager said Greece requires victory by any score: ”I want us to win, even by half a goal. Of course the more goals we score the better.”

Asked whether he would like a early goal, Santos answered: ”What we want is victory, regardless of whether the goal comes in the first or the 90th minute. Theory does not play soccer. If we are 100 percent focused, there is a clear difference in player quality and that should count.”

“The game is very difficult, but we are confident that we will win and do well. There are certain players who make up the backbone of the team and some others I am thinking of. We should make it, with more or less difficulty,” he added.

Santos has a full squad of 19 players to choose from and it will be a major surprise if he does not opt for his favorite 4-2-3-1 formation.

The only change he might be considering to the side he tested during training in Athens would be to field Panayiotis Kone instead of Sotiris Ninis on the right side of the midfield.

Some 200 Greek fans will be cheering on the national team at the Ta’Qali Stadium in Valletta.