First calm answers, then smiles in training. Legia is waiting hopefully for the football game against Leicester

– We are trying to get out of the mental pit. In the last game, improvement was seen in the second half. We were close to scoring a point. Of course, victory would have been the best for us. You have to bite the grass and fight in every match, and the atmosphere will definitely improve – at the pre-match press conference, Marek Gołębiewski, the coach of Legia Warszawa, appealed to his players.

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On Thursday evening, the Polish champions will play the penultimate match in the Europa League group stage. After Wednesday’s unexpected 2-1 victory for Spartak Moscow against Napoli, the situation of the Polish champions deteriorated. Legionnaires are in third place in the group, one point behind the Russians and Italians and with a point ahead of Leicester City, with which Gołębiewski’s team will play on Thursday at 21:00.

A possible defeat in England will mean that in the last round only the victory with Spartak in Warsaw will give Legia participation in European cups in the spring. Scoring a point at King Power Stadium would be difficult even if the legionnaires were in top form. And from this, Gołębiewski’s players are very far away.

On Sunday, the legionnaires lost 2: 3 to Górnik Zabrze, which was the seventh consecutive defeat in the league. The team hadn’t played that badly since 1936, when they were relegated for the first and last time from the highest level in the country. Despite the very bad situation in the table, Gołębiewski calmly answered journalists’ questions at the pre-match press conference.

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– I’m still enthusiastic, but the results don’t defend me. We lost all three matches in the league, we only won the Polish Cup. This is the job of a trainer, but we are still looking for the optimal combination. It was evident that after a few changes in Zabrze in the second half, the team started to function better. If I have such an opportunity, I will do everything to make this team rise – said the coach in Leicester.

Legion positive before the match against Leicester City

Mateusz Weteska appeared at the conference with Gołębewski. The defender of the Legion also appealed to his colleagues for unity and rise in difficult circumstances. – In this difficult situation, we must stay together as a team, support at every step. We cannot allow conflicts to arise in the team. In the second half of the match with Górnik it was obvious that we could play football. This should give us a positive kick. We did not win, but we are on the right path to that, said Wieteska.

And he added: – We avoid conflicts and the atmosphere in the team is good. The situation between Artur Jędrzejczyk and Bartek Slisz in the match against Górnik resulted from emotions on the pitch. Sometimes when something bad happens, you can say a few harsh words out of your emotions. However, everything is already explained and I can assure you that it is fine.

Wieteska calmly answered the question about the tension between Jędrzejczyk and Slisz at the end of the match in Zabrze. Both players quarreled after one of the hosts’ actions, which could raise questions about the atmosphere in the team.

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However, we received the answer and confirmation of Wieteska’s words at the beginning of training at King Power Stadium, which was open to journalists for the first quarter of an hour. You can talk about things that don’t work in Legia for a long time, but one of them is not the atmosphere between the players. Or at least that was what was seen in the beginning of the Leicester class.

The training, which began at 20:00 Polish time, was preceded by talks and jokes between the players. The players stayed together and it was impossible to tell by their faces that the club was in the worst situation in 85 years. So there were no mournful faces or dangling heads on the grass. There were smiles and a positive attitude before the next match.

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The training began with a warm-up conducted by one of Gołębiewski’s assistants. At the same time, goalkeepers – Cezary Miszta and Kacper Tobiasz – started classes. Artur Boruc did not come to Leicester. An experienced goalkeeper is still recovering from a back injury. – We have made a decision that Artur will stay in Warsaw and will be preparing with coach Krzysztof Dowhan. 99.9 percent will play against Jagiellonia on Sunday – assured Gołębiewski.

The game of “grandfather” ended the open part of the training for journalists. The team was divided into two groups and the players exchanged passes. The task of the players standing in the middle was to take over the ball as quickly as possible. In one group, Jędrzejczyk and Slisz played with each other, who joked after successive, successful games.

After Sunday’s misunderstanding, there is no longer a trace between them. Legia fans believe that it will be the same with the terrible form that consumes the team practically from the beginning of the season. Leicester City – Legia Warszawa match on Thursday at 21:00. Live coverage on and in the mobile application.

About David Martin

David Martin is the lead editor for Spark Chronicles. David has been working as a freelance journalist.

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