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Aly Ghazal: I have a contract with Nacional
Aly Ghazal gave an interview to the media following last night’s victory over Boavista, which kept up his team’s hopes of qualifying for next season’s Europa League.
With their win last night, Nacional must beat fellow Europa League hopefuls Paços de Ferreira on Saturday evening, and hope that Belenenses drop points against Gil Vicente in order to finish in sixth spot, which, because of Braga’s participation in the Taça de Portugal final, is now a Europa League spot.
Nacional’s job, whilst not impossible, will not be easy. Belenenses will face Gil Vicente who, with their weekend loss against Penafiel, have already been relegated and will likely be low on confidence as they prepare for life in the Segunda Liga.
Q: Aly, the success of your entire season boils down to this one game. Are you confident the team can beat Paços de Ferreira and hope for Belenenses to slip up [against Gil Vicente]?
A: Yes we think that way [confidence], we don’t think any other way. The only way [to qualify for Europe] is to win the next game, so it’s not about confidence. We can only do our job and win, and then we’ll see the other results.
Q: Nacional is not in a more comfortable position because of what we did in the early rounds [of the campaign]. What went wrong for the team to have started the season badly?
A: No, it’s not that we started bad. If you saw the first games, we did well, but we did not have the luck to win more points. But after this, we worked hard and calm and started to gain more points.
A: The confidence gained in January ended up making the difference?
Q: The confidence we built, it started from the people around us here in the club, because if they don’t give us the confidence that we could come back [to form], we will not come back. But they were relaxed, always talked well with us, the manager, the people here in the club and we started to get more confidence, and started to win and it was better for us.
Q: The game with Paços will be like a final. What do you expect from Paços de Ferreira?
A: This is the last game. Paços want to win because they are fighting for the Europa League. We want the Europa League. This game is on our field, we already won the first game there in Paços. So it will not be easy to lose this game, because we already won there so on our field, we have to win because we are fighting for the Europa League, as they are. We’re going to do our best to win this game, and see what will happen with the other results.
Q: Aly Ghazal has been at Nacional for some time, but has spoken about the possibility of leaving. If that is good for Nacional and for you, is there a chance you will leave?
A: Now I don’t have nothing. I have one more game this season, maybe if I have something, and if not I still have a contact here with Nacional. It’s okay for me here, I will continue here if I don’t have anything.
Nacional take on Paços de Ferreira at 18:00 local time on Saturday evening.
Video with questions in Portuguese and answers in English: