Michael Laudrup admitted to feeling lucky to have seen his Mallorca side come away from their first home game of the season with victory, just as Espanyol’s Mauricio Pochettino rued his side’s lack of fortune in Sunday.
A Jonathan de Guzman strike proved the difference between the teams in an otherwise even affair that saw the islanders have the better of the first half, and the Catalans the better of the second.
The Dane described Sunday evening’s game as typical of a first game of a new season: “We
“In the second half we were a bit lucky. It is not easy to play with three new players in the defence, especially if they unfamiliar with each other, but the end target of not conceding was most important, even as we saw two or three passages of play where we struggled,” conceded Laudrup, in reference to Espanyol’s dominance of possession and creation of an almost equal number of opportunities to Mallorca.
Mauricio Pochettino admitted his team were equally unfortunate not to collect at least a point from the game, particularly in response to the manner of the winning goal that was followed by a second half where Mallorca looked content to attack only on the counter. However, the Argentine also spoke of there being ‘much work ahead’ for the squad, as they failed to hit things off in attack.
“When we were playing better and the team in control and creating the chances, there was that unfortunate play,” in reference to De Guzman’s side-footed effort from 25 yards that took a deflection to beat the wrong-footed Cristian Alvarez.
“We missed out with the opportunities we had and missed an aggressiveness and intensity at times. But still, anyone on that field would have reached the conclusion that it was Espanyol’s match.
“It is clear that big players have left, but I leave here happy with what the team has produced at times, something we can draw upon in the future, where we have much work ahead of us,” concluded the Coach, who admitted to feeling ‘pissed off’ at the result.