Gornik Zabrze. Jan Urban: The match with Legia should be a show

Górnik Zabrze will host Legia Warszawa in the next match. Beginning on Sunday at 17.30.

Paweł Czado: Legia is in crisis: it has recently recorded six defeats in a row. Some say that it is good for Górnik, others that it is not necessarily. How do you think?

Jan Urban, coach of Górnik Zabrze: – I do not know. It is known that sooner or later Legia will win, because it is not normal that Legia is where it is. This team’s potential proves that it should be in a different place. The thing about football, however, is that sometimes such stories happen and it’s really hard to explain them. I don’t know if the current situation can help or hinder them, but I know for sure that we have to play a good match with Legia in order to win with her. Really good! We have to be a team that can create a team, but also use them. The scenario of the meeting may be such that there may not be too many of these situations.

You and Andrzej Iwan formed a duo, which in the 1980s gave fans a lot of satisfaction, and Górnik points after goals scored [Jan Urban strzelił 10 goli w trzynastu meczach pucharowych i ligowych, przyp. aut.]. Today in Górnik we also have a potential duo that could score points – I mean Jesus Jimenez and Lukas Podolski. So far, however, no goal has been scored from their joint action. Does this bother you or do you wait calmly, believing it is only a matter of time?

– The second: I wait calmly for Lukas to break down and score. It seems to me that the expectations of Lukas are too high. If we look at how many goals Lukas scored in previous clubs, it does not come out so much. It would seem that he is coming to the Polish Premier League, quite weak according to the rankings, but in reality it is not. It is unpleasant to play in this league, it’s a physical league, here everyone can run and disturb. There is a lot of contact, a lot of fouls, the game is torn, which makes players very uncomfortable to play. In this league, technically well-trained players are successful, hence the success of players from Portugal or Spain. But it only happens when they are not playing in contact, when they avoid this way of playing, such situations.

It seems to me that Lukas is in good physical shape, but you have to take into account that it would be much easier for him to play if we dominated the league matches more often. I told him: “Lukas, you score beautiful goals in training, then shoot in the same way, because there are situations when you can hit, use your advantage instead of looking for a partner”. In my opinion, it should change that. He should be more selfish on the pitch, because he could make more use of his own advantage, i.e. an excellent shot from the left leg.

Is this a special match for you?

– Indeed, I played quite a lot of these matches for Górnik, I was also the coach of Legia for four years. Indeed, these matches are to some extent unique, when I played football it was really a top league hit. In my time, these teams had the greatest potential and fought for the highest laurels. In recent years, it has not been the case for a simple reason: the potential of the Warsaw team is much greater than that of Górnik. However, history is history and these matches will always bring back memories.

Will this match also be special because of the fans? They are returning after the boycott, the match is to be crowded.

– Certainly so. You certainly do not need to motivate anyone for matches with Legia. The players from all sides receive signals: “hell, match with Legia”, there will be more fans in the stands than usual. No different than usual.

Will it be a show?

– It may be, it should be. Legia will definitely not come to be content with a draw, they will definitely fight for victory, they will do everything they can to start winning and climb the table. But we have the same plan for our future. We know what the Polish league is like: sometimes you can score more points on the top leagues and you lose with the weaker teams. We are aware of this. We believe that Legia will start to win, but after the meeting with Górnik Zabrze (smile).

The fact that the coach has recently changed in Legia makes your task difficult?

– Not. I think we know what kind of players they will have at their disposal there. There is only a question of who will play in the Europa League and who will play in our league. Rotations are always there. We know that they played with a five and a four in defense … No, no no: I don’t think the new coach has suddenly come up with something extra. On the other hand, the situation of Legia is difficult to explain. They played quite decently in many games and could have scored a lot more points, but … so did we. We’ve lost points in situations where this shouldn’t have happened.


About David Martin

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

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