TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras – As a player, Walter Centeno experienced the challenges of playing in Concacaf play in Honduras against Motagua and now he will have the same experience as a Head Coach when his Saprissa side takes on the Catracho club in the second leg of the 2019 Scotiabank Concacaf League Final on Tuesday.
“Now it’s my turn as a coach to play a big final against a great team, so it is going to be a difficult day, but we are aware that if we are valiant and daring, we are going to achieve great things,” said Centeno in his pre-match press conference.
“We are not expecting many negative things, we only are thinking about positive things both at the team and playing level,” added Centeno.
The Monstruo Morado earned a 1-0 win in the first leg in Costa Rica, but Centeno knows that sitting on that lead will not be enough.
“Tomorrow we have to build on the goal [from the first leg]. It is an important goal and with a lot of merit, but we know that it is not enough, so we have to be very intelligent and try to score a goal, have a lot of concentration and overcome all of the adversity that will be presented because we are going to play against a great team. You have to do a lot of things to try to be champion,” said Centeno.
Joining Centeno in the press conference was MF Christian Bolanos. As one of several veterans on the Saprissa squad, Bolanos noted the importance of helping the team’s younger players deal with the pressure-packed situation that they will face.
“The experience in these games we try to transmit to the younger players, they are taking their first steps. But in football there are no ages and like them we will also feel like butterflies. It has been a while since we have been in an international final, it has taken a lot to get here, it’s been a tough road and hopefully tomorrow we can emerge victorious,” said Bolanos.
With margins razor-thin, Centeno also knows that his team must be able to adhere to the circumstances of the match.
“We have to keep having confidence in the many good things that we do and adapt ourselves to everything. In the moment when we have to defend, we will do it. Equally when we have to attack, we will do it in our way. That is the way we are going to go,” concluded Centeno.